Month: July 2013

Insects of Meghalaya

Second review on Pebbles

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I commend the authors of this book for coming up with this great compilation… they where able to touch the heart of their readers through words that makes you see each and every scenery in the story. I can’t help but be affected, specially by my two favorites- The Imperfect Father and Misfortune Child…it’s as if you’re one with the story…feeling it as if your there…all the stories are worth your time reading/reflecting on. This could be an eye opener to some of the worlds biggest problems…congratulations and goodluck…. will be waitin for the next book..!

In India:

Amazon :

First review on my book

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As the author madhu mentioned.. this book really have different faces of life.. all the stories are very interesting.. and some of them made me think..and some made me emotional.. Imperfect father and misfortune child stories are very heart touching and really this world should get rid of cancer and poverty and hope one day will come.. me, hyderabad and bomb story was a real disaster happened in hyderabad..its like a real experience while reading it… what’s love is a very lovely story… true and real love b/n two souls.. and all the stories are nicely narrated… worth reading it.. good luck to my friend madhu kalyan… – See more at:

In india :

Amazon :


Our new book – Pebbles

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I’m SUPER excited today to be revealing my first book “Pebbles- Collection of short stories” cover page.

Here’s what “Pebbles” all about:

Different shapes, colors, textures, and sizes.Just like our life experiences, some are precious, some are ordinary, others heavy, some are light.

Photography by : Chris Marshall talented photographer from United Kingdom
Editor : Gunjan Vyas 
Author: Madhu Kalyan n Gunjan
Date: Coming Soon

Day 2 Amber Fort @ Jaipur

The old city in Jaipur is a bustling shoppers paradise. It doesn’t cater to tourists outside of the small area at the City Palace gate, so its a great opportunity to see how the locals live in the tight streets of Old Jaipur. Its a change from the norm that all of the streets are in a perfect grid, however the side streets which run in a straight line, are still quite tight, with only room for two scooters side by side (or one tuk tuk).

Amber Fort Jaipur

After I had my breakfast i visited Amber Fort. It’s located on top of the hill, therefore in order to get up there you have to ride an elephant or by jeep. Personally recommend those who are visiting the fort to go buy elephant. You will see India in a different view. Although, i’m quite against elephant ride, as it is not good for their backbone you see, but as far as i know, the authorities there only allow the elephants work till noon. So i guess it is alright ?

Its an amazing structure on the side of the ridge. Its huge walls are extremely tall and impressive. From a distance the fort glows a beautiful red in the late-afternoon sun. We’re left to wander the long hallways and giant public spaces within the palace. 

Its a bit disappointing on the interior, which has been allowed to age rather poorly. Most of the interior is blackened by air pollution, acid rain and thousands of tourist’s hands. The interior rooms are full of graffiti and crumbling floors, instead of the impressive frescoes and carvings at other palaces of equal magnitude. Its too bad a few people need to wreck such lovely things by carving their names into 100’s of year old hand painted murals…

As i mentioned, the elephants only work till noon, when we reach the queue for the ride is already very long. When i say long it isn’t like those you get when you visit a theme park. 


 I didn’t really get to hold the camera. It was too shaky, and i was a little scared. Haha. I thought i was going to fall off. Can’t really use words to describe that feeling, but i didn’t regret overall.

India’s painted elephants.Here’s a pic of the elephant I rode to amber fort


Strangers posing at my camera

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Along the way i encountered this.  Thought it was for punishment, you know.. those really cruel punishment for prisoners…

But this ? No worries. I was wrong. My tour guide told me that it’s used as a cooking pot. Yes, for the people in the palace. It’s really huge! Maybe it’s not so obvious in here.



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By the way, photographers should take note of this. Can you see the guy in orange in the picture above? Well think twice before taking pictures in India. Most of them work as “models” for you to photograph? And of course you will have to pay them. After taking this picture the guy in orange was asking me for money, i was so scared that i nearly run away. But there were 2 photographers beside me who did the same thing, but braver, in a sense that they stood really near to photograph him, and they almost ended up fighting. Saw one of the tourist encountered the same thing as well at Amber Fort, the lady he shot was asking him for money, and kept following the tourist but the tourist didn’t give her any.


I don’t know whether they are allowed to do that to us or not, but if they really ask for it just either give them or stop shooting and walk away. Don’t end up in a fight! or quarrel! Plus it’s our fault in the first place, we shouldn’t be shooting them like that.

Few More Pics of Amber Fort

img_3920 Indian elephants and their Mahouts, Amber Fort, India amer-fort-fresco elephant-ride-up-to-amer-fort india-21

And this is how i ended my day at Amber fort.

It’s getting late now i should go.


Day 1 Hawa Mahal @ Jaipur

You just can’t be in the Pink City and not pass by this imposing and charming structure of yore.

This is the Hawa Mahal or the ‘Palace of the winds’. It was built in 1799 by the poet-king Sawai Pratap Singh for the royal ladies to enjoy the various processions or day to day activities from the cool confines of this splendid structure. That was the era when women were not allowed outside and used to maintain ghunghat (purdah system). Built in exquisite Rajputana architecture, this 5 storied semi-octagonal and honeycombed structure comprises of 953 niches and 152 windows.

There is crazy traffic all around; still tourists stop by to relive the opulence of the bygone era. No wonder then, it has become the hallmark of Jaipur and also the most recognizable and photographed monument of this city.

Jaipur City: Capital of Rajasthan in India

Anyone can be mesmerized by the ancient sculpturing that reflects Rajputana culture too. It is meant for royal ladies so that they could have a view of the city. Hawa Mahal was built by Lal Chand Usta with pink sand stones. Many tourists can find it similar to Fatehpur Sikri because it has the floral patterns used by then Mughals.

One can make an entrance into the building through the Giant door which also connects City Palace. Tourist used to visit Hawa Mahal to enjoy viewing Jaipur from the Jharokas which is indeed great fun. Thus to enjoy the real beauty of Hawa Mahal, plan a trip to Jaipur now! Apart from this you can see many other tourist attractions also.

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Home-Style Chicken Masala (Indian-Spiced Chicken Stew)

It’s no secret that I love Indian food.  Love may even be an understatement.  Truthfully, I am obsessed with the cuisine!

This is a very simple recipe, really.  It doesn’t take long to throw together, and is quite forgiving.  You can toss in any stray veggies laying around in your refrigerator, and substitute the chicken with any protein you desire (mushrooms are an excellent vegetarian option!).



  • 6-8 chicken thighs (I used boneless/skinless)
  • 2 tbsp. olive oil
  • 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds
  • 1 large red onion- diced
  • 1 tbsp. garlic paste
  • 1 tbsp. ginger paste
  • 1 tsp. ground turmeric
  • 3 tsp. ground garam masala
  • 2 tsp. ground corriander
  • 2 tsp. ground cumin
  • 1/4 tsp. ground chili powder (more or less, depending on how spicy it is.  Mine is quite spicy.)
  • 2 large roma tomatoes- diced
  • 2 tsp. plain yogurt- whisked
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 2 tsp. salt–or to taste
  • about 2 c. vegetables- whatever you have on hand
  • chicken stock, vegetable stock, or water- as needed to thin the curry
  • Using one large pot with a tight fitting lid, heat oil over medium-high heat and add 1/2 tsp. cumin seeds. Once they begin to pop, add the diced onions and fry until the pieces become translucent.
  • Add the ginger and garlic pastes.  Keep stirring.
  • Add all the quantities of ground spices, and the bay leaf.  Keep frying.  The mixture should be quite dry and begin to stick to the bottom of the pan.  About three minutes.
  • Add the chicken to the pan and cook on high-heat for about 5 minutes, until the chicken has fully browned.  Add any vegetables you are using at this point.
  • Turn the heat back to medium-high and add the tomatoes to the pot.  Add about 1 cup of chicken stock (or water) and simmer until the tomatoes have cooked down.  Add the whisked yogurt.  Stir it all together and then bring the mixture to a fierce boil.
  • Put the lid on the pot, turn the heat to medium and simmer for about 1 to 1 1/2 hours–checking and stirring every 30 minutes.
  • Taste and adjust the salt-level.  Add additional chicken stock if the curry has become to thick.
  • Garnish with freshly chopped cilantro and serve with rice.