Saturday, 29 January 2011


kitchen inspection

At the moment, apart from my mornings filled with yoga and meditation, I am enjoying swathes of space to think, write and doodle. I'm going to be working full time when I get to Nepal so this is MY time! A creative bath. I soak in it for as long as I can. It's quite hot and sunny and going outside soon shows me who is boss (the sun of course) so afternoons are nice and cool in my little rooms. I don't even need the fan on much in there, not yet. So I stretch and lounge like a spoiled pet. 
I take my camera on a visit to the kitchen because something smells so good in there. I love Pushpa's kitchen. the reflections in the marble, the fresh vegetables and the soup bubbling away on the stove.

what's cooking?

The stove is a two burner calor gas affair on which Pushpa is able to produce vegetarian banquets unlimited and deluxe. The pans to cook with are like little vessels with no handles, there is a multi purpose gripping handle that works with every pot. Quite a neat system I think as it's less washing up and takes up less room. Also less places for grime to hide.

If I keep the bamboo blind up on my balcony the sun pours in and my ever vigilant Pushpa spies an opportunity to dry out her dahl which is easier to churn into powder for the magic that she does.
We take it in turns to follow the sun with the spread paper until it leaves the room.
This would make a great stop motion animation.
Here you can see the shadow of the rope that holds my blind up.
I like looking at it, it reminds me of sailing with my dad.

drying pulses

So these lazy loops are not just what my days are made of, the washing is a 'must do' job. A fragrant heap of yoga wear soon accumulates and a bucket is my washing machine. After navigating the pipe work map that lives in my bathroom I am able to drill into hot water after 11am as the solar panels have been doing their wonderful little job of providing us with free hot water.

my medley of pipes

And in I go with my Jasmine and Rose washing powder. I love doing my bucket wash, it's just fine. I'm doing stuff by hand and that counts for a lot. I love rinsing and rinsing and the thunderous rattle of water hitting an empty bucket is one of the Official Sounds Of India.

Tide's in

And the joy I know you will share of hanging washing out on a blow dry hot roof with coconut trees keeping my clothes company. As Chocolate Girl rather cleverly puts it 
"a lovely bit of billowage"
It dries in a couple of hours and smells quite a lot like sunshine.
This is of course easy for some of us to take for granted.
The UK is crippled with grey sky for ever at this time of year.
I say thank you thank you thank you. And then scoot back down to my rooms.

drying up among the coconut trees

And while I am roving this afternoon with my camera I thought I would give you a brief glimpse of my new year's resolution fruit which is to teach myself to embroider. Please don't laugh. I am enjoying it thoroughly. I don't have a manual, I had one from a charity shop at home but left it in a packing disaster zone. I bought one here
"Learn Yourself 121 stitches with Pictorial Guide" 
You couldn't make it up.
but I am having trouble putting faith in a book that calls a needle a neddle.
And I can't understand the diagrams!

So, here's me.
very roughly
stitching a story

stitching a story

and only slightly more successful are my crochet squares which are keeping time with me
and being rather meditative and good company in their own right.
I think I might need a yellow wool to sing out the sunshine song.
This is going to be a blanket made of very happy memories.

windows of wool

I'm not allowed to throw these cut ends away. Apparently they will be useful.
I can't imagine what for but then again, I'm always after a little thing to knot or tie.

wool ends

Love from me who appreciates all of you who drop by and share my blessed life.
I wish you could all pop round for chai and a spicy curried biscuit. 
Then you could hold my wool while I ball.


Teuvo Vehkalahti said...

Greetings from Finland. This blog is fun to explore, through other countries, people, culture and nature. Come take a look Teuvo pictures on my blog and tell all your friends, why you should visit Teuvo pictures on my blog, because that may be your country's flag to rise higher in my blog. Merry began 2011 years Teuvo Vehkalahti Finland

gill said...

Hi Louise
Yes the UK is grey today and bitterly cold though at least the days are noticeably lengthening! I wish my washing was drying outside in the sunshine!
Looking forward to seeing more of your India (and your embroidery!)

Lizzie said...

This was such a lovely post to read, Louise! It all sounds very relaxed and un-pressured. I envy your ability to drift off to India at regular intervals, but I am happy with life here (even if it is grey and cold). I love to read your blog posts and share a little of the sunshine you send us.
I like the embroidery and crochet efforts - the little squares are coming along so well and the cluster of French Knots is fab! Love the name of your embroidery book!
I hope you continue to enjoy your stay in India and that you are relaxed and ready for the work when you go on to Nepal.

Sarah said...

I really love reading your tales from India. I don't know if I will ever go there but I know I would love it. I would love to visit for a chai and a spicy biscuit-if only!

Sara Bowen said...

Gorgeous... I use those little bits of wool to stuff things like knitted owls and felted bits and pieces. I wish our washing powder smelled of jasmine and rose! Thanks for sharing, Sara x

chocolategirl64 said...

yeah ~ wish I had dirt magnets in my Tide:
you knows how I love a bit of proper pegged out billowage ^_*
no chance of that here with these grey skies: {sad face}
your french knots are better than mine!
looks like you remembered how to shisha too \0/
lush: like you:

louloulovesbooks said...

I can't tell you how lovely it is to log on here and see messages from my friends around the globe. Thank you.
And I'm glad you are enjoying my Life in India tales. It really is as colourful as I paint it. More so, photos are flat and India is roaring technicolor.
I'll try to post as often as I can.

Carol said...

I'm so enjoying your posts, they really bring to life your life there. Here in Australia it's hot but somehow I think we lack that amazing colour that you are experiencing.

Francesca said...

the neddle. that is actually quite adorable. i think your embroidery is actually going to be better because of it! x

Velma said...

just found your blog, and it's refreshing to see the light and color and to hear of adventures. i am so eager to read about your journey into nepal to teach (which is what i do). i will be looking in from time to time!

Lya de Putti said...

ahhhhh - adore the colour you have just put into my black and white life! JX

suzie said...

Whatever that delicious looking bubbly affair is on that there stove…..please get Pushpa to pass on the recipe. I can hardlt hear my self type above the sound of my belly gurgling.
You sure do look like you are having an absolute ball, Lou. I might have the sun on my side but I sure am, well, only one way to say it really…..well jell!