29 May 2023

From the bartender’s corner – Kairi Panha Caipirinha

This is a personal concoction. Hence the difficult to pronounce name. Well, this has two parts.

The first is “Kairi Panha” – also known as “Aam Panna“. “Aam Panna” is a juice made of raw mangoes with some cumin seeds, rock salt, sugar and mint leaves added to it. This is a very refreshing and popular drink during the tropical summers of India.

Added 2 parts of that to one part of Cachaca. This is the most popular distilled spirit in Brazil made from fermented sugarcane. It is also the base alcohol for Brazil’s national drink – Caipirinha.

And to that I added some “bhaja masala” made by Sharmila. This is cumin seeds, coriander seeds, fennel seeds and then a bit of cardamom – dry roasted and then grounded to powder.

That was a perfect pick me up for the evening.

29 May 2023

Another twist to letter writing

Recently got some over the top writing material. Handmade paper. It is actually less paper and more cloth. Made from pure Egyptian cotton with absolutely no chemical used (according to the artist who makes it). Looks like old parchment paper!

The one challenge is that because it is cloth, the cotton fibers – which give a great natural feel to the surface, also can blot ink. Which means, I cannot use my fountain pens.

Had to resort to a ball point. Used a golden Sheaffer ballpoint today.

28 May 2023

Update on my dizziness (and running)

So, if you are still following the anthology of my dizzy spells, the latest and greatest is here… Went for a 5K run. After an initial half mile, it came back again. There was a constant sense of slight imbalance. Very slight one, though. I had decided prior to starting that I was not going to stop and leave it up to my brain/body to learn and adjust quickly.

In general, the sense of imbalance has gone down a lot and other than during running, I am not sensing it much.

And since it has receded, the doctor’s advice has been to stop any deeper level tests (like blood flow at the back of the neck, arteries etc etc). All primary and secondary (blood, EKG/ECG, motor response…) tests have come negative. The two key things we are banking on are (*) I never feel like throwing up and (*) the symptoms are going away.

One thing we now know is this : the similar episode in May 2020 could not have been BPPV. It was very much like this time around and this was not BPPV either. Since it was Covid time then and I could not go to the hospital, we will never know what had happened. Just like this time!!

Meanwhile, I will keep running. I suspect, the symptoms will fully go away.

We will hopefully make further progress in conclusive diagnosis the next time this comes back.

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27 May 2023


I was walking in Alpharetta downtown one evening. Generally watching people and peeking into the stores by the street. Something caught my eye in one of the stores. Backed up a few steps. If you can see at the back end of the wall on the right side – there is a painting of a girl. I thought that looked like something Sharmila had done. I asked her and she confirmed!!

I did not know there were Alpharetta downtown shops selling her paintings. Turns out there was another one in the store!

27 May 2023

Ride to Talking Rock

This is a very small town in north Georgia – with a population of a whopping 91 (2021 census). They have done a great job after Covid in converting an old train rake into a Brewery. There was live music, beer and hotdogs aplenty. I think I saw the entire town population there!!