February 11th – 13th, 2017-Pune, India
Why does 3 a.m. come up so fast? My alarm went off telling me it was time to wake up and get to the Hyderabad airport so I could fly to Pune, India and see my friend Neerja. We had planned to meet at the airport and go back to her place in time for breakfast which is exactly what we did. When I saw Neerja at the airport, we gave big hugs to each other and started chatting immediately! It’s just in our nature ❤
After catching a cab and arriving at Neerja’s place, I felt very relaxed, it felt so good to be in someone’s home and it was familiar to me since I was there last year. I saw Dinesh, Neerja’s husband again and all three of us enjoyed chatting, laughing, and eating together. I can’t even describe the feeling of happiness I felt and still have when I think about being with them because we all get along so well. For breakfast, Neerja made Paneer sandwiches with coffee and it was soooooo good!! 🙂
My energy reserves were running low by noon and I couldn’t believe I had to take another nap! I felt like a cat that was never recovering from jet lag because of all the excitement happening. When I woke up it was time for lunch and I was spoiled again with some amazing rajma and rice, made my MasterChef Neerja! We all took it easy that day and spent time visiting which was really amazing and just what we needed. I was very happy we didn’t have to go anywhere big that day, but we did take a walk outside near Neerja’s place and sat in a nice park while some kids played in the playground. After that, we came inside to relax and eat some more! For supper, we had stuffed green eggplant with chapatis. I have never had such amazing vegetarian food before and I regret not taking pictures of these creations but I think I was too tired and hungry to think about my phone.
Speaking of my phone, I was searching for a SIM card this time and the rules had changed which made it harder for anyone to buy one unless you could prove your residency there because of the demonetization with the Indian rupee. Luckily, Dinesh had an extra SIM card that I could use and it worked on my phone! Hallelujah!!! Now I could finally use the Ola app to book cabs everyone was talking about! 😛
On Sunday, we woke up and had poha for breakfast which was new to me and delicious. Later on, we had dal fry and rice for lunch. That day, we had planned a bloggers meet up at a nearby Starbucks. Prior to me arriving, we arranged for this to happen with anyone who lived in Pune to meet us there at 3 pm. Nitin and Vipul came to meet us and we all had coffee, chatted and got to know each other in person since we knew each other from blogging. It’s a really amazing experience to meet people in person that you only know from the online world. We managed to get a picture of all 4 of us even though it’s so dark! The lighting in Starbucks needs some adjusting. Either that or I need a new phone which is highly possible! 😛
After having some great conversations, it was time to head home and this time, I rode on the back of Neerja’s motorcycle which was really fun!! What a nice change from the cabs! ❤ You look awesome NJ! 😀
After arriving back home, we stayed in the garden area of Neerja’s place and took some pictures of us together. It was a very nice setting and we had so much fun taking them. After the photos, Neerja was back to work in her kitchen and I took notes on everything she had made that weekend. I wanted to make so many things for my kids when I got home because they love Indian food too. For supper, all 3 of us had matar paneer and chapatis which were so great! Also, during the weekend, I was able to have Neerja’s famous Chai her entire family raves about, so once again I was spoiled! I’m getting hungry just writing about everything!
The weekend went by so fast and on Monday it was already time for me to head back to Mumbai and catch the train to Alleppey!
Thank you so much Neerja and Dinesh for an amazing weekend of great conversations, laughter, food and fun, you are both outstanding friends, and I loved spending time with you guys! 😀
Much Love ❤