Restaurant review – Afraa Restaurant and Lounge,City Centre, Kolkata

Afraa had been the first restaurant we had decided to visit after moving back to Kolkata. Our son was just eleven months then and we chose to skip having a meal there eventually because not a single listing on any of the sites related to food or restaurant mentioned it as kid friendly. An almost impulsive decision to go at the City Centre Mall on the first weekend of the year finally got me to visit Afraa Restaurant and I definitely  felt that this should have happened much before.

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The salad, bread and chat counters

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Rat tales – my not so pleasant encounters with the species!

Last afternoon, I was working on my blog trying to brainstorm for the next topic when I  suddenly noticed a small rat run inside the room. The apartment complex, where I reside in Kolkata is getting renovated. It was the turn of our flat to get repainted and repaired this week. Every day I would find some or the other windows/doors kept open by the workers. That would have been the prefect point of entrance for this tiny creature. With my twenty seven month toddler then sleeping on the bed, I had no option but to dial my father who, at that moment was present in the adjacent room. There was no way that I could let my son wake up so fast. Putting him to sleep usually takes more than an hour and I am never willing to let my efforts go waste by waking him up early. After an intense search, we could still not locate it. I couldn’t shake off the entire incident throughout the evening. I am easily intimidated by all insects/animals larger than the cockroach. The moment I spot a lizard somewhere nearby, I scream my heart out. So a rat, despite its tiny statistics is an object of fear for me. I recollected that this was my third encounter with the species, the first being in Delhi.

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Restaurant Review – in search of the Chinese flavor of Kim Ling

Tangra is rightly known as the China Town of Kolkata. The moment one enters the lanes, it is easy to figure out the reason. A food lover, specially that of authentic Chinese cuisines is spoilt for choices. Ever since I started exploring Kolkata restaurants, I have visited China Town multiple times and somehow Kim Ling became a personal favorite over the years. Over the New year weekend, it was close to 4 pm when we entered the restaurant for lunch.In no time, all the tables were full and the place was abuzz with activities. That goes to speak volumes about the popularity of this place amidst the old and new generation alike.

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Part of the items ordered in Kim Ling

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Movie review – ‘A death in the Gunj’ that highlights the plight of soft and sensitive men

Once in a while we come across movies that leave such a profound effect on the audience that one cannot help but keep thinking about the story and its characters even days after finishing watching it. A death in the Gunj is one such movie that took me a whole week to come out of its magical spell to focus on writing the review instead.

Cast – 

  • Vikrant Massey (Shutu)
  • Gulshan Devaiah (Nandu)
  • Tillotama Shome (Bonnie)
  • Tanuja (Anu/Nandu’s mother)
  • Om Puri (Nandu’s father)
  • Kalki Koechlin (Mimi)
  • Ranvir Shorey (Vikram)
  • Jim Sarbh (Brian)
  • Aparna Sen (the voice of Shutu’s mother)

Director – Konkona Sen Sharma

Duration – 2 hrs 46 mins

Genre – Drama

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Breaking gender stereotypes – the kitchen saga

Last evening, my twenty-seven month toddler came asking for the ingredients to make chicken biriyani. He was pretend playing with his grandfather while I was busy with other chores. I was clueless about the answer. Despite my obsession with devouring biriyani at every possible opportunity, I couldn’t recollect ever making an attempt to cook it. Truth be told, I detest cooking. To put things into perspective, I actually hate the sight of kitchens except the time when I need to make my customized cup of sugary-milky coffee. I told him to check with his father after he returned home because his father definitely kept himself updated on the process of churning out delicious home cooked meals.

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Restaurant review – Marco Polo, Kolkata 

The city of Joy celebrates every festival with equal vigor and enthusiasm. Park Street area in Kolkata is where people flock to celebrate Christmas and New Year. The area beautifully decorated with lights, trees has an ongoing street food festival during this period. With the variety of restaurants available, this can safely be labelled as a food lover’s paradise. Over the Christmas weekend, we decided to brave the crowd of Park Street and head towards one of the best options for fine dining in the city – Marco Polo.

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The glass pane outside

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2017 – the year of taking the plunge!

Just two days to go before we bid adieu to 2017 and welcome the new year. 

Since this is the 50th post on my blog and probably the last this year, I thought I would keep it about my personal journey this year. Three and a half months back, I started soniasmusings.com. It was born out of my love for the craft of writing, my desire to be self employed and my choice of being around to enjoy every milestone and growing phase of my toddler. I used to be a high profile Banker working with the country’s top Bank. Except a good profile, glamorous position and great pay, I don’t remember ever being very excited about my banking job. So while I won a lot of awards and accolades, my heart was never into making it bigger. However giving up all these to do what I thought I was passionate about took me more than a year. It materialized only after I became a mother. Having lost my mother to an un-diagnosed ailment in 2011, I became a motherless new mum in Sept 2015. Without anyone to guide me through this new phase of life, it was really difficult to cope up with the additional responsibilities in the initial days. A supportive husband, a doting father who doubled up both as the grandparents for my son and empathetic in laws helped me sail through this. I was determined to learn everything that was needed to take care of my son on my own. Six months later,when my maternity leave was about to get over, I realized that I had grown so attached to my role as a mother that going back to the corporate world had long ceased to be an option for me. Thus began the shift from Bangalore to Kolkata, the switch over from the coveted seven figured salary to getting nil credits in the account every month end.

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