Married to Indian Nationals.

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#31 Oct 6th, 2006, 17:34
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  • smallsquirrel is offline
#31
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Originally Posted by icetea Cooking back home is an entirely different story than it is here.

So by the way, I thoroughly admire any Indian woman who has a job, even part-time, and cleans and cooks 3 meals a day too, even with the help of a maid.
Good points. I too admire women who can cook all these meals themselves or mostly themselves. I look at my MIL. She has some help cleaning the house. But she cooks 3 meals a day for 6 people (at the least). I do not know how she does it. Her entire day is comprised of cooking or preparing to cook.

I will say that cooking vegetarian is MUCH more difficult than when you have the option of preparing meat. Making a full meal with only veggies and starch is more challenging because one whole element is removed. You must find new proteins, new things that are filling and nutritious, and there have to be 3-4 dishes of them... all of which involve flavor layering and complicated stuff (save maybe rasam and a couple palyas)

Gone are the days when I could just marinate a turkey breast, make some green beans and a salad and be done~!
#32 Oct 6th, 2006, 17:49
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#32
Well, as the foreigner in this house is the man, the boot is on the other ballpark here...

I'm thinking that my wife actually has an easy time, as I have eat like a bird and never want more than one or two dishes with rice. She has accustomed her self to eating food cooked without salt, but we still have chily, though reduced for me. Actualy, I keep telling her I can take a little more. Apart from an omelette with plenty of pepper, she doesn't really like my cooking.

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but chooses to hand me a spoon at the oddest of times!
And it's always a teaspoon --- utterly useless thing except for stirring tea and eating boiled egss
~
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#33 Oct 6th, 2006, 18:36
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#33
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Originally Posted by Nick-H And it's always a teaspoon --- utterly useless thing except for stirring tea and eating boiled egss
LOL Nick, we too have only some tea spoons in the house I didn't bother buying proper spoons, I know I'd be the only one using them..and for me that takes the whole fun away from many things!

smallsquirrel - I totally agree, cooking meat is much easier and faster. Think about washing and peeling all those veggies, not to mention the cooking. So yes, vegetarian cooking is much more challenging. We are far from being vegetarian by belief, but I raaarely cook meat, because my father-in-law's concept of cooking meat is the same dish...loaded with the same brown coconut& spices sauce (I don't know the names of most of the dishes, although I cook them). It's heavenly, but I got fed-up with it by now.
I guess this is it's pretty much like my grandfather's idea of "vegetarian cooking"...he can't imagine what on earth can be cooked...since you're removing meat. Mixing vegetables and all that is far too outlandish, for him vegetables are a side-dish for meat and nothing else.

I cook 2-3 times a day, with rice for lunch and chapati for evening and breakfast, but then I can't really complain, as I don't cook more than 1 type of dish per meal, unlike it's properly done here, and I don't have a job either. But you're right, cooking and preparing for cooking, as you say, even if cooking for fewer people, is what takes up most of the time during the day, and it can get quite frustrating at times for someone who is not used to this routine.
#34 Oct 6th, 2006, 18:53
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#34
We put almost as much effort into feding our local crows as we do into feeding ourselves!

they get really pissed off with plain rice, so we try to give some non-veg to them, even if only egg.

We usually feed them around 5.00pm and they are quick to learn. yesterday by 4.45 there were more than thirty crows sitting on our and the neighbours' roofs Ka-ka-ing for their dinner!
#35 Oct 6th, 2006, 19:09
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Well I'm glad to see that there's another crow fan around I simply love their smartness, curiousity and funny "faces". I am quite convinced that they come and talk to me (oops..sign of loneliness!? ), they are my best Indian friends around, apart from my husband..(oh and the squirrels..and the mainas..).

we feed them leftover chapatis..they love them. I haven't tried rice so far, they seem to love anything made out of atta/maida, like chapatis, bread or mixture.
#36 Oct 6th, 2006, 19:18
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Yes! One of our jungle crows (the big all-black ones) sits near me and listens atentively!

We have one disabled crow: one leg and a broken beak, and have worked out how to put food so he can see but the others don't. Watching the children hassling their parents for food was fun.

Love the squirells too. We had a nest between the window frame and net in our loo: two babies...

I like the geckos too. But I'm glad there's no monkeys here .
#37 Oct 6th, 2006, 19:19
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ah yes, you're right, forgot the lizards

what about ants, aren't they nice...ahem..pets?

this is the fun thing about living in India..the house is like a Zoo...you gotta love it (or else you'll go mad trying to chase them out).
#38 Oct 6th, 2006, 20:53
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ANTS!

Well, actually I like the big ones that bumble around harmlessly. But the very tiny ones that are hard to even see, but tickle as they walk on you and have a nasty bite: those I rank with mosquitoes .

I found a dozen or two just milling around on my leg the other day
#39 Oct 6th, 2006, 23:10
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ah yesterday I spent half a day killing ants. As I woke up in the morning I saw a thick line of ants marching busily from one end of the house to the other: they were shifting. I killed them all (god have mercy for my soul), closed the cracks in the walls at both ends...but after 2 hours they were right back, through newly-made cracks. But this wasn't any uncommon occurence..I simply don't know how to deal with them: when they want to shift, even if it's right through the flat, nothing stops them.
#40 Oct 6th, 2006, 23:41
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i haven't read the proceeding pages to understand how the conversation shifted from marriage to indian nationals to ants, but wanted to add my experience with ants. my theory is that they are taking over the world

seriously, a few years back, a certain brown and red bodied variety seriously infested my yard. one night i was outside watering my flowers in the near dark when i suddenly felt a stinging sensation on my ankles. and then again! it was ants, mean ants that were attacking me unprovoked. the next morning i saw them, a whole viscious army, marching all over my front porch. my son traced them all the way down a long driveway to a neighbors tree some two hundred feet away. the tree was teeming with ants. he and his cousin doused it with chemicals (poor tree ) while i set out to find a chemical-free way to get rid of them. i tried some diatamaceous earth, but they just shook themselves off and kept going. they're like a mutant ant or something?!

i found the same variety this summer, big colonies in my back yard. i spoke with the neighbor living behind my house who said she had a tree full of them. the tree is recently dead; we wondered if the ants killed it.

everyone i know has had the sugar ant variety in their homes this year, even when there is nothing for them to feed off of. those kind are annoying, but seem relatively harmless, unlike the mean ones who sting unprovoked.
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#41 Oct 7th, 2006, 01:53
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I guess the link is that it us ex-pat-marrieds that are discussing the ants...

Your experiences sound much worse, and Yogagal mentioned somewhere else that she has huge ants. But my problems is with the ants that are so tiny you can hardly see them.

You are wrong in only one detail, Lotus blossom: Ants have already taken over the world!!!!
#42 Oct 7th, 2006, 02:53
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#42
I've been married to an Indian for seven years now. I still get asked if the food is too spicy even though I have an asbestos mouth. Neat tabasco is no problem for me.

Office parties are a bit strange. No women, a game of bingo and crazed dancing with the guys. The alcohol is still there, so at least there is one constant. Though I prefer beer to whisky, but whisky is in more plentiful supply. Mustn't be ungrateful though, so down it goes!

We've got a part-time maid. I cooked back in the UK, but I've given up more or less. San does cook, but it is nice to have someone else knock up a curry though.

Wildlife: the ants, they're incredible! Drop a crumb of food on the floor and in seconds it is surrounded by dozens of the biting red b*@**!!s . I quite like the lizards though, and there's a pair if squirrels for me to look at out of the office window. The pool is full of frogs at the moment - I don't mind swiming with them, but San is rather less keen .
#43 Oct 7th, 2006, 10:18
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Originally Posted by JamesW Office parties are a bit strange. No women, a game of bingo and crazed dancing with the guys
aww! I thought I'm the only one who finds this strange...no women and a bunch of otherwise respectable men dancing like drag queens at office parties, sometimes shirtless and all that!

And since we're deep into ants now - any way of killing them without poisoning the whole house? I was reading about luring them with food baits mixed with boric acid..which is not supposed to be toxic for humans. They then take it to the nest. I can't imagine living much longer with ants swarming around...but then JamesW here gives me hope....seven years..
#44 Oct 7th, 2006, 10:48
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#44
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Originally Posted by icetea And since we're deep into ants now - any way of killing them without poisoning the whole house? I was reading about luring them with food baits mixed with boric acid..which is not supposed to be toxic for humans. They then take it to the nest. I can't imagine living much longer with ants swarming around...but then JamesW here gives me hope....seven years..
surprised to see a married to indian nationals thread morphing into one on indian domestic wildlife, but maybe its the same thing.

for years, we have been using this: make a dough (out of chappati flour) with milk, boric powder (the carromboard one) and a little sugar, just like you make atta for chappatis.

when still doughy, make marble size balls out of this and dry them in the sun. they become hard. (you get, typically, about 200 marble sized balls)

place these dried balls in various places... drawyers, behind knick knacks.. use your imagination.

change every few months.

you dont see a single cockroach or ant in the house. if you do, its time to do it again.

well, ants, rarely, but a little judicious chalk then takes care of them.

sorry cant give exact measurments since wife has escaped.
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#45 Oct 7th, 2006, 11:03
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thanks capt_mahajan ....gives me a lot of hope to get rid of these creatures some day! I have no idea how to deal with them and these menfolk of mine don't bother at all, there's no use asking them about ant killing methods and all

I have seen that chalk thing in the stores..but I have to figure out how to use it. I thought I might use it on door and window frames, I suppose that's what's intended for?

and one more question...any idea where to buy that boric powder thing? thanks
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