Owner of This Restaurant Feeds the Homeless and Poor Every Single Day, No Questions Asked

Owner of This Restaurant Feeds the Homeless and Poor Every Single Day, No Questions Asked

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There are restaurants, and then there are places that welcome you in like a long-awaited guest and make you feel at home. Sakina Halal Grill in Washington, D.C., is the latter.
At first glance, the place looks like a well-maintained restaurant: bright and inviting with tile mosaics and chandeliers. The Indian-Pakistani cuisine is rumored to be delicious and the staff friendly, but that’s not all.
For Kazi Mannan, opening a restaurant has been a life-long dream, finally accomplished in 2013. Advertisement – story continues below
“The restaurant has been here for decades. I took it over in 2013 and this really was my dream,” Mannan told Eater . “I came from a village in Pakistan that didn’t have electricity or plumbing. Our school was completely outdoors. It was always my dream to overcome poverty and own a restaurant. And, that’s what I did.” TRENDING: Teenage Girl Given New Service Dog from Former NFL Player & Wife After Hers Was Shot to Death
After years of hard work and taking jobs at a gas station and as a limousine driver, Mannan was able to buy the restaurant and put his own spin on it, including changing the name to “Sakina” Halal Grill to honor his mother, Sakina, who passed about three decades ago. Advertisement – story continues below
“I am very blessed to have a truly amazing family,” Mannan said.
“My mother taught me to be generous and give with my time. Because remember, we were broke. But, if we had a guest visit, she would make tea and welcome them into our home. She gave everything of herself. I’m trying to teach that to my family too.”
Not only is he teaching his family, but he has also been an excellent example of charity to the community around him and the rest of the world. That’s because Mannan has a “no questions asked” policy when it comes to paying for food. If you can’t swing it, that’s OK: You can still have a plate of delicious food.
“If someone says I need a free meal, OK,” Mannan said. “If you can’t afford a meal, come in and have a free meal. Enjoy the same atmosphere that everybody who is paying is enjoying.” Advertisement – story continues below
“That question, I ask God every day,” Kazi Mannan told WJLA . “How do I keep my business open, growing and making profit?”
But his free-meal policy has been in effect for five years, and they’re still going strong. He estimated that in 2016 they gave away 6,000 meals, and in 2018 that jumped to 16,000. They have regular attendees and know their orders by now.
“We have so many that are like a regular guest. We know them and what they want to eat. Some have teeth problems so we give them boneless chicken, tender ones,” Mannan said.
“For some, the alcohol and the drugs, a lot of people have teeth problems.” Advertisement – story continues below
He feels a kinship with those poor souls who trudge through his door, weary and worn, with no money to their name because he was once in their shoes.
“Once upon a time, I was in a similar situation where I didn’t have enough money to eat. You pass by a restaurant but never able to go in. When you don’t have money, nobody is going to let you in.”
“People have fear that a lot of homeless people have mental issues, health issues, they are dirty, not clean and if you let them come in they will ruin your business,” he said. “I tell them look at my life and look at my restaurant — does this look dirty to you?” Advertisement – story continues below
Manna said he’s not looking for handouts, but if you want to help, stop by and purchase a meal. It’s regular, paying customers who make his act of kindness possible.
“I don’t want any donation but if you’re coming in to eat, that’s your support of helping a community restaurant that is offering kindness and love others,” Mannan said. “I’m trying to worship our Creator through food.”
“I’m the little guy on this block,” he added. “And, I love it. Because I want to say, ‘Hey listen, corporate people and people in politics! Listen to me!’ I want to show them what love can do , and I want to spread a wave of love that touches the lives of millions.”
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Culinary Art India: Budding chefs take the spotlight

Home > Features > Culinary Art India: Budding chefs take the spotlight Culinary Art India: Budding chefs take the spotlight Madhupriti Mitra 2019-03-17T21:09:11+05:30
One of the most loved food-related festivals, Culinary Art India, is known for its thrilling competitions among the chefs. The four-day event saw over 500 chefs from across the country participating in various activities and competitions. It not only welcomed the professional chefs to showcase their creative culinary skills, but also gave a platform to housewives as well as students to put their best foot forward.
First day of event saw 45 chefs demonstrating their culinary expertise and competing in Authentic Indian Regional Cuisine, Fruit and Vegetable Carving and Live Cooking category. Second day saw Petit Fours and Pralines, Artistic Bakery Showpiece along with Three Tier Wedding Cake prepration. On the third day, 57 chefs exhibited their artistic side in the categories of Artistic Pastry Showpiece, Plated Appetizers, Live cooking and Contemporary Sushi Platter. On the fourth and last day of culinary challenge, 82 chefs competed in three competetd in Three course set dinner, Plated Desserts, Mocktails and Live cooking.
“The culinary art India has been in existence for 14 years and the objective of this event was to create a platform where students, fellow chefs, professionals, can display their culinary skills, and get rewarded. The festival give them the necessary exposure and groom them to compete at the global level,” said Davinder Kumar, President of Indian Culinary Forum, adding, “The response from the audience as well as participants has been phenomenal this year. We have witnessed a large number of entries by college students, who were confident about their work at such a young age.”
A visual treat for foodies, culinary artistry attracted a lot of crowd across all ages, however, youngsters – with high ambitions of making big in the culinary and hotel industry – were seen at large throughout the festival. One such student of hotel management, who also won the first prize for ‘plated dessert competition’, finds solace in baking. Speaking about his love for cooking, he said, “I am a first year student of International Institute of Culinary art. Though I enjoy every aspect of cooking, baking is something that fills me with happiness and joy. I want to get specialised in the art of baking and learn as much as I can. For this competition, I tried to give my 100 percent and bring up something new for the jury. I got four ingredients with which I prepared four different recipes in the ‘Plated dessert competition’, and won gold for the same,” said 19-year-old student, Nikhil Bhatia.

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Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices

Indian antitrust watchdog raids Glencore business, others over pulse prices 54
The logo of commodities trader Glencore is pictured in front of the companys headquarters in Baar, Switzerland. Reuters photo
NEW DELHI: Indias antitrust watchdog raided units of global commodities trader Glencore and two other firms in Mumbai, in an inquiry into alleged collusion on the price of pulses, four sources with knowledge of the raids told Reuters.
More than 25 antitrust officials carried out the raids at the offices of local units of Glencore and Africas Export Trading Group, and Indias Edelweiss group which previously had a commodities business, two government sources told Reuters.
The Competition Commission of India (CCI) has been investigating allegations that the companies formed a cartel to discuss the pricing of pulses while importing and selling them in the Indian market at higher prices in 2015 and 2016, when India faced an acute shortage, the sources said.
A spokesman for Switzerland-based Glencore, Charles Watenphul, declined to comment, while Indias Edelweiss, which sold its commodities trading business in November 2016, and the Export Trading Group did not respond to requests for comment.
Two years of drought pushed up prices of pulses such as chickpeas and black grams, which are a staple of Indian cuisine, in 2015 and forced New Delhi to offer duty-free imports, encouraging foreign and Indian traders who imported pulses to sell locally.
The collusion by these companies led to higher prices of pulses, one of the government sources said, adding that the CCIs inquiry started three months ago.
The investigation will also assess whether the companies have continued their alleged collusion even after the prices of pulses stabilised in recent years, the source said.
The raids on five company offices in Indias financial capital began on Friday and were concluded on Saturday.
Antitrust officials collected evidence, including documents and e-mails, and questioned company officials during the raids, a second government source said.
Another source, an industry executive, told Reuters that CCIs search involved going through company records at Glencores office in Mumbai, confirming it was part of the watchdogs probe into accusations of fixing import prices.
The drought during 2015 wilted crops and exacerbated shortages of food such as protein-rich pulses and India, which consumes about 22 million tonnes of pulses annually, faced a shortfall of seven to eight million tonnes in 2015 to 2016.
The CCIs raids on commodities traders mark only its fourth such search operation in its near 10-year history. They can only be conducted with approval from a judge.
In October, the CCI raided the offices of global brewers such as Carlsberg and Anheuser Busch InBev and found e-mails which allegedly showed violations of Indian anti-trust laws.
The brewing companies have pleaded leniency under a CCI programme, Reuters has reported. Reuters Facebook 0

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Unraveling the glory of an enchanted ruins: Hampi Chronicles I

By Anurag Sengupta View from Anjeneya Hill We commenced our journey from Bangalore availing the AC sleeper bus, they run on a regular basis from Bangalore to Hospet, the nearest town to Hampi. The buses are mostly scheduled for an overnight journey and our bus took off from Bangalore around 9 pm, reaching Hampi the subsequent morning around 8’30, though the scheduled time was a tad early. From Hospet, one can take the auto-rickshaws or cabs to reach Hampi. The half an hour journey covering a stretch of 12 odd km enthralls you with rural landscapes and as we entered the vicinity of Hampi demarcated by an entrance we experienced a sudden rush. The best plausible reason being the sudden change in landscapes and terrain, landscapes reflecting a primeval picturesque of ruins and boulder formation. The sight of a multitude of balancing rocks lying in a vegetative state with the bright sun showering its dazzling rays creates a beautiful backdrop. Our maiden visit to Hampi was simplified as we went through a lot of travel journals browsing the web. We came across an array of options for accommodation, eating and places to visit in and around. The river, Tungabhadra flowing by the Virupaksha temple draws a divide between two regions of Hampi. The stretch adjoining the Virupaksha temple has the temples dedicated to a number of Hindu deities constructed during the late medieval periods. Holding onto the notion of exploring one area at a time we took leaps over the surfaced boulders lying on the river bed to reach the other side of the river, to what they colloquially call as the “Hippie Island” known to the locals as Virupapura Gadde. Since we had been during the peak of summers the river had almost dried up, or else one needs to take a boat during the season to reach the other side of the river. One can predominantly witness a lot of coracles a.k.a Dongi in native tongue on either side of the banks during the season for traversing on either side of the river, they merely charge INR 10 from each person to cross the river. Our basic research and travel diaries of other people heaped a lot of praise on Shanti Guest House in Virupapura Gadde, further, the images of the property were alluring, which coaxed us to secure an accommodation there. A call prior to the day of traveling assured us availability, which is highly uncertain during peak season as they get booked well in advance. But if you are planning to take a trip to Hampi, a stay here will definitely invoke a sense of sanctity; with lush green paddy fields facing the small cozy cottages lined up in one stretch and the shallow waters of river Tungabhadra offering a picturesque backdrop, it serves as an ideal escape place to revel in the midst of nature and witness different hues of sunlight gleaming over the stretch of boulders and rocks. Pic: Cottages in Shanti Guest House We had booked a cottage with all basic amenities and we decided to explore the stretch along Virupapura Gadde on Day 1. To help us draw a better itinerary for the next two days we counseled one of the attendants at the guesthouse, without much ado we rented a couple of gearless bikes. So in this part of the Hampi commute isn’t a problem at all, as you can rent out vehicles at minimal rates. We were billed 200/day for each bike we had rented, exclusive of fuel costs. After having a hearty American breakfast at the Shantis’ we headed out for our escapade. On our way to the Sanavar lake the which was our first destination we came across a person who sought for a lift. Since I was riding solo I thought of helping him out and it turned out that he owns dongris by the Sanavar lake and he gives rides to tourists. From him we learnt that most of the adventure activities like bouldering and cliff jumping take place predominantly during the season that stretches from October to March, we were keen on cliff jumping but due to the low water levels during the summers it was discouraged but he compensated all our excitement by taking us to a beautiful stretch of sanavar lake where the entire lake was surrounded by the boulder formation and the stretch of gravel sand, smeared in the heat of the scorching sun. We were taken to a spot in the middle of the lake in the dongris where it seemed like a private lake to us, with no other souls in the vicinity. It turned out to be a peaceful encounter with the rugged summer terrain of Hampi as we swam across the edges of the lake and soaked in some warmth of the sun. We chilled by the side of the lake for over an hour and as we had asked the Dongriman, he came to pick us up at the scheduled time. Though it was hardly a 10-15 minute ride to the lake shore from where we could take the motorable road but it was a time-saving affair as we would have exhausted close to an hour if we had hiked to the place where we had parked our two-wheelers. From there we headed towards a café named White Elephant, we could see small billboards and graffiti’s on the rocks of the Vijayanagara while riding towards the Hanuman top another major attraction in this part of Hampi. Exhausted and in quest of a place to relax and please our taste buds we landed up in White Elephant café. It is, cozy café with the picturesque view of the of the petite hills with the same boulder formation all across them, the paddy fields in front of the hills were adding the melange to the color palette along with the coconut trees at every crossroads of the paddy fields. We ordered a few Israeli and continental dishes at the café, though the food won’t elevate your gastronomical experience but it was worth rejuvenating our starving souls and the chilled beer turned out to be an elixir in disguise. All this while a constant vigil was being kept on time as we didn’t want to miss the sunset from the Hanuman Top aka the Anjaneya Hill. One of the major attractions in this part of Hampi, it is believed to be the birthplace of Hanuman, one of the revered Hindu deities. Though it is highly arguable as Gokarna in Karnataka also claims of the same historical heritage but nevertheless, our purpose was to cherish the view from the hilltop. Thanks to the stairs that have been constructed to accomplish a smooth climb up the hill, we took close to half an hour for our ascend of 487 stairs to the top of the hill. Do ensure to carry water from the stalls at the foothills as you won’t find any source throughout the climb until you reach the top, the afternoon heat of the sun might give you an exhaustion but on completion of the ascend one realizes that it was pretty much worth the effort. Apart from the temple area, one can witness huge boulders balancing at the top of the hill and it offers a panoramic view of the entire stretch of Anegundi, the historical village located at a distance of 5kms from Hampi. The rugged terrain of Anegundi along with the ruins, the stretch of paddy fields along the river Tungabhadra and the small villages and habitations spread across the plains is indeed a sight for the sore eyes. And as the sunset befalls one can witness different hues across the plains as if the Mother Nature embeds an array of filters to a frame over a period to captivate ones’ imagination. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom) ; a)View of the Sanavar lake along with the dongris, b) View from the Anjeneya Hill/ Hill top of the Hanuman Temple, c) Hues of Sunset from the Anjeneya Hill, d) Hues of Sunset from the Anjeneya Hill After witnessing the mesmerizing sunset, we headed back to our homestay. On the way, one would find remains of the Aqueduct, the water canal system from Vijayanagara kingdom lying in ruins. It resembles a giant stone bridge in ruins. Once we reached the homestays we relaxed until the latter half of the evening and had a leisure time in the shacks inside the Shantis over a few drinks and narratives from the local staff at the Shantis about Hampi and the culture of the inhabitants there. Exhausted we headed to our beds early, knowing the following day would be hectic as we had to witness the archeological marvels of Hampi. With an urge to witness the sunrise I woke up early and strolled towards the backyard of Shanti’s that faces the paddy fields, further graced by the beautiful stretch of lush greenery and the turquoise blue stream of Tungabhadra. I ordered a cup of tea and witnessed a magnificent sunrise as the sun gradually rose past the small hills and engulfed the entire plains with its lustrous rays. And over the next half an hour we witnessed a herd of sheep, thronging near the paddy fields to graze on the stretch of foliage. The intrigue to have a close in view of the river pushed me to walk past the paddy fields and grazing area towards and river and it turned out to be a soothing experience as the river was gleaming with the early morning sunrays and to complement the picturesque backdrop, the river bank was adorned by lotuses on the river bank. As much as I wished to take a bath in the river but the hands of the clock weren’t favorable, so after capturing the landscapes on lenses I strolled back to Shantis and grabbed a quick breakfast. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom) ; a) Sheeps grazing early morning on the pastures in the backyard of Shantis , b) Strech of Tungabhadra flowing behind the Shantis , c) Pastures of Virupapura Gadde d) View of Tugabhadra and Virupaksha temple from Virupapura Gadde And hence we took off to our exploration of Ancient Hampi, crossing the river. Since we had a time crunch we decided to take an auto-rickshaw, it quoted a reasonable price to take us on a round of all the major tourist attractions of Hampi. Since Virupaksha temple was right near to the starting point where we would eventually come back later in the evening, we started with Kadale Kalu Ganesha, the exterior of this temple consisting of the elegant pillared mandapa to the front would remind anyone of the Parthenon located in Athens, Greece the classic Greek architecture, especially with the pillars and the backdrop but what really stands out in this temple is the tall 4.5 meters monolithic Ganesha carved out of a huge boulder, a glimpse of an elite craftsmanship from that era. Right opposite to it there lies the ruins to one of the biggest medieval spices, gemstones and jeweler market. Back in the glory days, the Vijayanagara Empire was one of the most extravagant markets in the world trading in gemstones, diamond, and spices. It attracted merchants and traders all across the globe and the travel diaries of many travelers are testaments to the affluence of this empire back in the heydays. Right in the middle of the market there lies the holy stepped tank with a mandapa at the center. This was only used for storage but also during the float festivals aka Teppostsava. The next marvel we witnessed was the Narasimha Shrine, the huge monolithic sculpture of Lakshmi Narasimha is one of the most outstanding works of sculptural art of Vijayanagara. The 6.7-meter sculpture was hewn out of a massive boulder in 1528 A.D during the reign of Krishnadevaraya. Very close to the shrine of Narasimha is an interesting shrine with a huge monolithic Shiva linga of nearly 3 meters high. The lower part of the linga remains in water throughout the year. The source of water is through a small canal drawn from the Tungabhadra river. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom); a) Kadale Kalu Ganesha temple , b) Market area of the Vijaynagara Kingdom with the tank along with manadapa at the cente, c) Narasimha Shrine, d) Monolithic Shiva Linga The next marvel that we visited was Prasanna Virupaksha, a.k.a the underground Shiva temple, dated back to 14th century A.D the visit inside the temple will surely give you goose bumps as it is pitch dark inside and to my utter surprise when some other tourists flashed light on the ceilings of the underground mandapa, I saw numerous bats hanging upside down which sent chills down my spine and I opted to make a smooth walk past the hallway of the underground mandapa. Amidst the scorching heat, the buttermilk stored in earthen clay pots can be a bliss to your dry throats and one can find the local vendors selling the same at the entrances of the major tourist attractions in Hampi, (P.S- If you like pickles, do try the spicy mango pickle with buttermilk). Further, we explored the Indo-Islamic style of architecture reflected in Lotus Mahal and the Elephants Stable, Parshwantha temple, Ranga temple, Hazara Ramachandra temple and Pansupari Bazaar. The entire stretch of temples is in the same enclosure, so it won’t be a hassle to visit all of them. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom); a) Lotus Mahal , b)Elephant Stable c) Interiors of Krishna Temple, d) Basement of Queens’ Palace By the time we wrapped up exploring all the above places we were pretty exhausted and dehydrated, the scorching heat of summer wasn’t showing any mercy to us. We decided to grab our lunch and commence our exploration in the latter half of the day. We asked the auto-rickshaw driver to take us to a restaurant catering to local cuisine and ended up in Hotel Ashok. I am not sure if you can find it on Google as it is a small restaurant and on demand, they even serve beer inside the cabins. As we were starving without much thought we ordered for the chicken and mutton masala along with the rotis and ghee rice. Though I don’t recommend the rotis the gravy based meat items along with rice are a must here. We relished our meals as it was a special gastronomical experience very different from the other south Indian regional cuisines. With a rich blend of spices and thick curry, anyone who cherishes spicy food will love the regional cuisine here. After a hearty meal, we headed towards Vitthala Temple. This is one of the most important temples found in Hampi as it marks the highest workmanship indicating the mature Vijaynagara phase of architecture. There are many facets and intricacies of Vithhala temple which is difficult to identify by self exploration, so we booked a guide at a reasonable amount of 200 INR, who guided us through every piece of architecture in the temple area starting from the stone chariot, music pillars and different mandapas with self-exploration architectural display. I strongly suggest one to book a guide, especially for Vitthala temple. All the guides have been through the training from the archeological survey of India and have a vast knowledge of the history of Hampi. Pics : (From Left to right and top to bottom) a) Kalyana Mandapa in Vitthalla temple, b) Stone Chariot , c) landscape from the vicinity from Kalyana Mandapa, d) Pillars surrounding the Vitthalla temple After witnessing the magnificent Vitthala temple we paid a quick visit to Queen bath, this Indo-Islamic architectural marvel is a large square structure with a plain exterior and an ornate interior. Pic : Interiors of Queens’ Bath By the time we wrapped up these places we had almost approached the evening. It was obvious that we won’t be able to witness all the shrines, and there we figured out that one needs to spare at least 4 days for exploring Hampi and we had only 2 days and 1 night at our disposal. Never mind, we had a reason to visit again this captivating ruins from the glorious past of our country again. From there we headed to a café named Mango Tree Restaurant. With a basic set up and nice usage of wallpapers and psychedelic Shiva posters, this place stood out among the other cafes in the adjoining Virupaksha temple area. We grabbed some beverages and some snack at the café before taking a stroll in Hampi market. We bought a few merchandises from a store named “Keep calm and be Hampi” right on the parallel road to Virupaksha temple. We had to catch a bus late at 10 pm from Hospet which gave us 2-3 hours to relax so we headed back to the shacks in Shantis, from there we witnessed a glorious sunset and by 8’30 we made move to Hospet. It was a pleasing stroll to the other side of the river under the full moon lit radiant Tungabhadra and the glittering stars, a rare sight to witness for the ones from cities. This pretty much marked the end of our memorable trip through the pages of the glorious past of India and we signed off with many reasons to come back to Hampi. Hampi is an unparalleled experience which has the aura of echoing the rich culture, heritage, and grandeur of the Indian kingdoms from the glory days in its own unique way. I look forward to paying my next visit to Hampi very soon for more memoirs to come. Hotels Map Flights Swayed by the stimulating narratives and enchanting experiences of travelers, second thoughts never surfaced when a chance came our way to witness the archeological marvel from Ancient India. Hampi known to many as a temple town, recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site lies in northern Karnataka, India. Thanks to a long weekend that the last minute plan could be drawn to time travel to an era when Indian Kingdoms were blessed with prosperity & thrived high on opulence. We planned our trip over the last weekend of April, which is presumed to be an “Off-Season” in Hampi as it is the time when the summer makes its way, but in spite of anticipating harsh weather conditions the zeal to explore the Old Vijayanagara Kingdom a.k.a Hampi overpowered our reticence. We commenced our journey from Bangalore availing the AC sleeper bus, they run on a regular basis from Bangalore to Hospet, the nearest town to Hampi. The buses are mostly scheduled for an overnight journey and our bus took off from Bangalore around 9 pm, reaching Hampi the subsequent morning around 8’30, though the scheduled time was a tad early. From Hospet, one can take the auto-rickshaws or cabs to reach Hampi. The half an hour journey covering a stretch of 12 odd km enthralls you with rural landscapes and as we entered the vicinity of Hampi demarcated by an entrance we experienced a sudden rush. The best plausible reason being the sudden change in landscapes and terrain, landscapes reflecting a primeval picturesque of ruins and boulder formation. The sight of a multitude of balancing rocks lying in a vegetative state with the bright sun showering its dazzling rays creates a beautiful backdrop. Our maiden visit to Hampi was simplified as we went through a lot of travel journals browsing the web. We came across an array of options for accommodation, eating and places to visit in and around. The river, Tungabhadra flowing by the Virupaksha temple draws a divide between two regions of Hampi. The stretch adjoining the Virupaksha temple has the temples dedicated to a number of Hindu deities constructed during the late medieval periods. Holding onto the notion of exploring one area at a time we took leaps over the surfaced boulders lying on the river bed to reach the other side of the river, to what they colloquially call as the “Hippie Island” known to the locals as Virupapura Gadde. Since we had been during the peak of summers the river had almost dried up, or else one needs to take a boat during the season to reach the other side of the river. One can predominantly witness a lot of coracles a.k.a Dongi in native tongue on either side of the banks during the season for traversing on either side of the river, they merely charge INR 10 from each person to cross the river. Our basic research and travel diaries of other people heaped a lot of praise on Shanti Guest House in Virupapura Gadde, further, the images of the property were alluring, which coaxed us to secure an accommodation there. A call prior to the day of traveling assured us availability, which is highly uncertain during peak season as they get booked well in advance. But if you are planning to take a trip to Hampi, a stay here will definitely invoke a sense of sanctity; with lush green paddy fields facing the small cozy cottages lined up in one stretch and the shallow waters of river Tungabhadra offering a picturesque backdrop, it serves as an ideal escape place to revel in the midst of nature and witness different hues of sunlight gleaming over the stretch of boulders and rocks. Pic: Cottages in Shanti Guest House We had booked a cottage with all basic amenities and we decided to explore the stretch along Virupapura Gadde on Day 1. To help us draw a better itinerary for the next two days we counseled one of the attendants at the guesthouse, without much ado we rented a couple of gearless bikes. So in this part of the Hampi commute isn’t a problem at all, as you can rent out vehicles at minimal rates. We were billed 200/day for each bike we had rented, exclusive of fuel costs. After having a hearty American breakfast at the Shantis’ we headed out for our escapade. On our way to the Sanavar lake the which was our first destination we came across a person who sought for a lift. Since I was riding solo I thought of helping him out and it turned out that he owns dongris by the Sanavar lake and he gives rides to tourists. From him we learnt that most of the adventure activities like bouldering and cliff jumping take place predominantly during the season that stretches from October to March, we were keen on cliff jumping but due to the low water levels during the summers it was discouraged but he compensated all our excitement by taking us to a beautiful stretch of sanavar lake where the entire lake was surrounded by the boulder formation and the stretch of gravel sand, smeared in the heat of the scorching sun. We were taken to a spot in the middle of the lake in the dongris where it seemed like a private lake to us, with no other souls in the vicinity. It turned out to be a peaceful encounter with the rugged summer terrain of Hampi as we swam across the edges of the lake and soaked in some warmth of the sun. We chilled by the side of the lake for over an hour and as we had asked the Dongriman, he came to pick us up at the scheduled time. Though it was hardly a 10-15 minute ride to the lake shore from where we could take the motorable road but it was a time-saving affair as we would have exhausted close to an hour if we had hiked to the place where we had parked our two-wheelers. From there we headed towards a café named White Elephant, we could see small billboards and graffiti’s on the rocks of the Vijayanagara while riding towards the Hanuman top another major attraction in this part of Hampi. Exhausted and in quest of a place to relax and please our taste buds we landed up in White Elephant café. It is, cozy café with the picturesque view of the of the petite hills with the same boulder formation all across them, the paddy fields in front of the hills were adding the melange to the color palette along with the coconut trees at every crossroads of the paddy fields. We ordered a few Israeli and continental dishes at the café, though the food won’t elevate your gastronomical experience but it was worth rejuvenating our starving souls and the chilled beer turned out to be an elixir in disguise. All this while a constant vigil was being kept on time as we didn’t want to miss the sunset from the Hanuman Top aka the Anjaneya Hill. One of the major attractions in this part of Hampi, it is believed to be the birthplace of Hanuman, one of the revered Hindu deities. Though it is highly arguable as Gokarna in Karnataka also claims of the same historical heritage but nevertheless, our purpose was to cherish the view from the hilltop. Thanks to the stairs that have been constructed to accomplish a smooth climb up the hill, we took close to half an hour for our ascend of 487 stairs to the top of the hill. Do ensure to carry water from the stalls at the foothills as you won’t find any source throughout the climb until you reach the top, the afternoon heat of the sun might give you an exhaustion but on completion of the ascend one realizes that it was pretty much worth the effort. Apart from the temple area, one can witness huge boulders balancing at the top of the hill and it offers a panoramic view of the entire stretch of Anegundi, the historical village located at a distance of 5kms from Hampi. The rugged terrain of Anegundi along with the ruins, the stretch of paddy fields along the river Tungabhadra and the small villages and habitations spread across the plains is indeed a sight for the sore eyes. And as the sunset befalls one can witness different hues across the plains as if the Mother Nature embeds an array of filters to a frame over a period to captivate ones’ imagination. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom) ; a)View of the Sanavar lake along with the dongris, b) View from the Anjeneya Hill/ Hill top of the Hanuman Temple, c) Hues of Sunset from the Anjeneya Hill, d) Hues of Sunset from the Anjeneya Hill After witnessing the mesmerizing sunset, we headed back to our homestay. On the way, one would find remains of the Aqueduct, the water canal system from Vijayanagara kingdom lying in ruins. It resembles a giant stone bridge in ruins. Once we reached the homestays we relaxed until the latter half of the evening and had a leisure time in the shacks inside the Shantis over a few drinks and narratives from the local staff at the Shantis about Hampi and the culture of the inhabitants there. Exhausted we headed to our beds early, knowing the following day would be hectic as we had to witness the archeological marvels of Hampi. With an urge to witness the sunrise I woke up early and strolled towards the backyard of Shanti’s that faces the paddy fields, further graced by the beautiful stretch of lush greenery and the turquoise blue stream of Tungabhadra. I ordered a cup of tea and witnessed a magnificent sunrise as the sun gradually rose past the small hills and engulfed the entire plains with its lustrous rays. And over the next half an hour we witnessed a herd of sheep, thronging near the paddy fields to graze on the stretch of foliage. The intrigue to have a close in view of the river pushed me to walk past the paddy fields and grazing area towards and river and it turned out to be a soothing experience as the river was gleaming with the early morning sunrays and to complement the picturesque backdrop, the river bank was adorned by lotuses on the river bank. As much as I wished to take a bath in the river but the hands of the clock weren’t favorable, so after capturing the landscapes on lenses I strolled back to Shantis and grabbed a quick breakfast. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom) ; a) Sheeps grazing early morning on the pastures in the backyard of Shantis , b) Strech of Tungabhadra flowing behind the Shantis , c) Pastures of Virupapura Gadde d) View of Tugabhadra and Virupaksha temple from Virupapura Gadde And hence we took off to our exploration of Ancient Hampi, crossing the river. Since we had a time crunch we decided to take an auto-rickshaw, it quoted a reasonable price to take us on a round of all the major tourist attractions of Hampi. Since Virupaksha temple was right near to the starting point where we would eventually come back later in the evening, we started with Kadale Kalu Ganesha, the exterior of this temple consisting of the elegant pillared mandapa to the front would remind anyone of the Parthenon located in Athens, Greece the classic Greek architecture, especially with the pillars and the backdrop but what really stands out in this temple is the tall 4.5 meters monolithic Ganesha carved out of a huge boulder, a glimpse of an elite craftsmanship from that era. Right opposite to it there lies the ruins to one of the biggest medieval spices, gemstones and jeweler market. Back in the glory days, the Vijayanagara Empire was one of the most extravagant markets in the world trading in gemstones, diamond, and spices. It attracted merchants and traders all across the globe and the travel diaries of many travelers are testaments to the affluence of this empire back in the heydays. Right in the middle of the market there lies the holy stepped tank with a mandapa at the center. This was only used for storage but also during the float festivals aka Teppostsava. The next marvel we witnessed was the Narasimha Shrine, the huge monolithic sculpture of Lakshmi Narasimha is one of the most outstanding works of sculptural art of Vijayanagara. The 6.7-meter sculpture was hewn out of a massive boulder in 1528 A.D during the reign of Krishnadevaraya. Very close to the shrine of Narasimha is an interesting shrine with a huge monolithic Shiva linga of nearly 3 meters high. The lower part of the linga remains in water throughout the year. The source of water is through a small canal drawn from the Tungabhadra river. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom); a) Kadale Kalu Ganesha temple , b) Market area of the Vijaynagara Kingdom with the tank along with manadapa at the cente, c) Narasimha Shrine, d) Monolithic Shiva Linga The next marvel that we visited was Prasanna Virupaksha, a.k.a the underground Shiva temple, dated back to 14th century A.D the visit inside the temple will surely give you goose bumps as it is pitch dark inside and to my utter surprise when some other tourists flashed light on the ceilings of the underground mandapa, I saw numerous bats hanging upside down which sent chills down my spine and I opted to make a smooth walk past the hallway of the underground mandapa. Amidst the scorching heat, the buttermilk stored in earthen clay pots can be a bliss to your dry throats and one can find the local vendors selling the same at the entrances of the major tourist attractions in Hampi, (P.S- If you like pickles, do try the spicy mango pickle with buttermilk). Further, we explored the Indo-Islamic style of architecture reflected in Lotus Mahal and the Elephants Stable, Parshwantha temple, Ranga temple, Hazara Ramachandra temple and Pansupari Bazaar. The entire stretch of temples is in the same enclosure, so it won’t be a hassle to visit all of them. Pic : (From left to right, top to bottom); a) Lotus Mahal , b)Elephant Stable c) Interiors of Krishna Temple, d) Basement of Queens’ Palace By the time we wrapped up exploring all the above places we were pretty exhausted and dehydrated, the scorching heat of summer wasn’t showing any mercy to us. We decided to grab our lunch and commence our exploration in the latter half of the day. We asked the auto-rickshaw driver to take us to a restaurant catering to local cuisine and ended up in Hotel Ashok. I am not sure if you can find it on Google as it is a small restaurant and on demand, they even serve beer inside the cabins. As we were starving without much thought we ordered for the chicken and mutton masala along with the rotis and ghee rice. Though I don’t recommend the rotis the gravy based meat items along with rice are a must here. We relished our meals as it was a special gastronomical experience very different from the other south Indian regional cuisines. With a rich blend of spices and thick curry, anyone who cherishes spicy food will love the regional cuisine here. After a hearty meal, we headed towards Vitthala Temple. This is one of the most important temples found in Hampi as it marks the highest workmanship indicating the mature Vijaynagara phase of architecture. There are many facets and intricacies of Vithhala temple which is difficult to identify by self exploration, so we booked a guide at a reasonable amount of 200 INR, who guided us through every piece of architecture in the temple area starting from the stone chariot, music pillars and different mandapas with self-exploration architectural display. I strongly suggest one to book a guide, especially for Vitthala temple. All the guides have been through the training from the archeological survey of India and have a vast knowledge of the history of Hampi. Pics : (From Left to right and top to bottom) a) Kalyana Mandapa in Vitthalla temple, b) Stone Chariot , c) landscape from the vicinity from Kalyana Mandapa, d) Pillars surrounding the Vitthalla temple After witnessing the magnificent Vitthala temple we paid a quick visit to Queen bath, this Indo-Islamic architectural marvel is a large square structure with a plain exterior and an ornate interior. Pic : Interiors of Queens’ Bath By the time we wrapped up these places we had almost approached the evening. It was obvious that we won’t be able to witness all the shrines, and there we figured out that one needs to spare at least 4 days for exploring Hampi and we had only 2 days and 1 night at our disposal. Never mind, we had a reason to visit again this captivating ruins from the glorious past of our country again. From there we headed to a café named Mango Tree Restaurant. With a basic set up and nice usage of wallpapers and psychedelic Shiva posters, this place stood out among the other cafes in the adjoining Virupaksha temple area. We grabbed some beverages and some snack at the café before taking a stroll in Hampi market. We bought a few merchandises from a store named “Keep calm and be Hampi” right on the parallel road to Virupaksha temple. We had to catch a bus late at 10 pm from Hospet which gave us 2-3 hours to relax so we headed back to the shacks in Shantis, from there we witnessed a glorious sunset and by 8’30 we made move to Hospet. It was a pleasing stroll to the other side of the river under the full moon lit radiant Tungabhadra and the glittering stars, a rare sight to witness for the ones from cities. This pretty much marked the end of our memorable trip through the pages of the glorious past of India and we signed off with many reasons to come back to Hampi. Hampi is an unparalleled experience which has the aura of echoing the rich culture, heritage, and grandeur of the Indian kingdoms from the glory days in its own unique way. I look forward to paying my next visit to Hampi very soon for more memoirs to come.

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Hyderabad-native Ahmed critical after NZ mosque attack

Home » Hyderabad-native Ahmed critical after NZ mosque attack Hyderabad-native Ahmed critical after NZ mosque attack Indian High Commissioner to New Zealand Sanjeev Kohli said nine missing persons of Indian national/origin following the terror attack. Category: Hyderabad , News , Top Stories Posted by safoora Published: Mar 15, 2019, 6:58 pm IST Updated: Mar 15, 2019, 7:14 pm IST Image Courtesy: News Minute
HYDERABAD: Ahmed Iqbal Jahangir from Hyderabad was among the people who were injured in horific mass shooting incidents at two New Zealand mosques on Friday.
After receiving the gunshot in the chest, Ahmed was immediately taken to a hospital after the attack and underwent a surgery. He is battling for his life.
A residents of Amberpet in Hyderabad , Ahmed went to New Zealand 15 years ago where he runs a Hyderabadi food restaurant near Al Noor Mosquet in Christchurch. His family members were safe. Also Read: New Zealand Terror Attack: 49 Dead, gunman an Australian citizen
Speaking to TNM, his brother, Mohammed Khursheed Jahangir, said, “He has been in New Zealand for almost 12 years now and he owns a restaurant there which offers Hyderabadi cuisine. He went for his Friday prayers. Two of his friends were killed in the attack. My brother himself is struggling for his life. We are not able to get any proper news about what is happening over there. He has a wife and two children; one aged 3 and one aged 5.” #Hyderabad -Khurshid Jahangir,brother of Ahmed Jahangir who was injured in #NewZealandShooting : My brother was injured & is now recovering in a hospital. He is currently undergoing surgery. We have seen in the video he has been shot in the chest. We’re trying to reach the Embassy. pic.twitter.com/Lt94JE4Xyr
— ANI (@ANI) March 15, 2019
An anxious Khursheed was waiting for more information from New Zealand. He wants to rush to New Zealand to be with his brother and sought help of Hyderabad MP Asaduddin Owaisi .
Owaisi, in turn, reached out to TRS Working President KT Rama Rao over Twitter to help Jahangir’s family to travel to New Zealand.
K. T. Rama Rao said he would request NRI department to help the family. A video from #ChristChurch shows one Ahmed Jehangir who was shot. His brother Iqbal Jehangir is a resident of Hyderabad & would like to go to NZ for Ahmed’s family.
I request @KTRTRS @TelanganaCMO @MEAIndia @SushmaSwaraj to make necessary arrangements for the Khursheed family
— Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) March 15, 2019 Asad Saab, Will request our NRI department to assist https://t.co/wFHiUnELHH
— KTR (@KTRTRS) March 15, 2019
Another Farhaj Ahsan, of Indian origin, was also reported to have gone to the same mosque and is currently missing. Farhaj Ahsan, a person of Indian origin, was also reported to have gone to the same mosque and is currently missing. His family in Hyderabad, I request immediate assistance to his family as well. His family’s contact details are available with me & I’ll share the same with you. pic.twitter.com/KYwBcs2yTM
— Asaduddin Owaisi (@asadowaisi) March 15, 2019
Indian High Commissioner to New Zealand Sanjeev Kohli said nine missing persons of Indian national/origin following the terror attack.
“As per updates received from multiple sources, there are nine missing persons of Indian national/origin. Official confirmation still awaited. Huge crime against humanity. Our prayers are with their families,” Kohli tweeted.
Attacks on two mosques in New Zealand which left at least 49 people dead on Friday have sparked horror, revulsion and dismay around the world.
One of the gunmen – believed to be an Australian extremist — apparently livestreamed the deadly assault.
Muslims face ‘mass killing’
“With this attack, hostility towards Islam that the world has been has been idly watching and even encouraging for some time, has gone beyond the boundaries of individual harassment to reach the level of mass killing,” said Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

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Interesting bookmarks and apps

bookmarks
The Spruce Eats
If you love food, and are willing to experiment with new flavours, look no further than The Spruce Eats. The website is home to step-by-step cooking tutorialswith photos and sometimes even videosfrom experienced home cooks and chefs. You will find over 25,000 articles and recipes that span a variety of topics and cuisines. Or, if you just want to stick closer to home, just type the word “Indian” in the search box to find dishes, food ideas and more from all over the country. You can browse for recipes by course (breakfast, lunch, dinners, dessert…), region (Asian, Middle Eastern, European…), ingredients (chicken, veggies, seafood…), and the website even has a complete section on drinks (cocktails, beer, wine, teas…). For those learning to cook, The Spruce Eats has a category titled How-Tos that’s packed with techniques and tips, knife skills, kitchen hacks and more.
www.thespruceeats.com
KissPNG
If you’re looking for quality images to use in your designs, whether it’s for school and college projects, presentations, brochures, or even invitation cards, head to KissPNG. The resource is home to more than three million PNG images with transparent backgrounds, so you won’t even need to create cutouts before using these over your background images. All the assets on this website are free to use with no restrictions on the number you can download. To help you find exactly what you’re looking for, KissPNG provides you with over 50,000 categories; each of which come with “related searches” and recommended images to help you make your decision. You can further finetune search results by sorting the images by popularity and newness, size (medium or large…), type (outline or silhouette, and even colour theme.
www.kisspng.com
Computer Hope
Do you find yourself at a disadvantage when it comes to computers? If yes, then this website should be your go-to resource for free tech support. Computer Hope helps you find a solution to your problems with simple keyword searches. Besides tech support in hardware, software and operating system issues, it comprises an exhaustive dictionary with over 15,000 computer-related terms and acronyms; the website is packed with hundreds of tips in all major computing categories including the internet and social networking, and it even has an online tools section to help you diagnose computer problems without downloading any software. Students can also refer to its history section for a lowdown on important dates and developments in the field, and you can even create a free account to interact with other users and volunteers on its forum.
apps
YouTube Music
This new Google app is a streaming service that gives you access to official releases of songs, new albums, playlists, remixes, and music covers. After you install YouTube Music, you are prompted to select languages and your favourite artists. The app uses this informationalong with your YouTube ‘liked’ videos—to tailor a listening experience just for you. It comes with a ‘smart search’ feature to help you find a track even if you can’t remember what it’s called.
So, if you search for “song from which Mehbooba, Mehbooba is copied”, you will get Demis Roussos’ Say You Love Me. You can choose to just listen to the song or even watch its accompanying video. YouTube Music even has a section called Hotlist that showcases music trends. The free version of the app is ad supported but you can opt for a Premium ad-free account that continues to play in the background while you toggle between apps; it even allows for offline downloads.
Android, iOS Free
HumOn
So you have an amazing sense of melody, but don’t know how to write music. Or, perhaps, you are a composer and suddenly a great tune comes to your mind, but you don’t have a piece of paper to write it down. In both cases, HumOn – Simplest Music Maker might just be what you need: Just hum your tune into your phone’s mic, and the app automatically converts it into notation. When you’re done, you can select the Genre—Melody, New Age, Ballad, Shuffle, R&B, Rock, Classical, Disco, etc—in which you would like your music to be arranged. You can then head to the mixer section to fine-tune the musical arrangement, and even visit the score section to make manual changes to the notes, change the BPM, pitch, and more. Finally, when you’re done, you can export the audio file as an M4A or MP3. A paid Pro account will let you export the sheet music as a PDF, convert your melody into MIDI and give you an ad-free experience.
Android, iOS Free
Afterpulse – Elite Army
If you’re looking for some serious one-onone gun-toting action, then check out Afterpulse – Elite Army. We would advise you to start playing in the training mode, where you learn the tricks of the trade and get accustomed to the game’s controls. In the process, you will also earn points that you can use to acquire and level-up your weapons, along with enhancing your gear. The game’s controls are simple: You get a directional pad on the left to navigate your character, while your right hand controls your strafing action and the trigger. Afterpulse boasts of realistic ragdoll physics and battlefield graphics; and you get a choice of over 200 weapons that grows up to 1,200 as you advance. It should be noted that Afterpulse requires an internet connection, and the load times—till the servers get populated with players—can seem a tad bit long, but once you’re in, gameplay is frenetic enough to keep you coming back for more.
Android, iOS Free

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Why do so many Restaurants Fail?

This is how I see it. Menu Why do so many Restaurants Fail?
Over the years, I’ve worked in many restaurants. I’ve owned restaurants and I’ve dined in innumerable restaurants all over the country as well as in Mexico and in Europe. While I’m not in the restaurant consulting business, I do have some definite ideas about why so many restaurants are doomed from the day they open the doors for business.
Perhaps the biggest problem of all, not only for restaurants but for any business, is underfunding. An entrepreneur may have a clever niche for a restaurant, a good location, and all the bells and whistles, but even the best restaurants can take months of slow-go before they begin to support themselves. An operator should have enough reserve to manage to go six months without seeing a penny in profit.
Startup alone is costly. Store location and lease cost more than most persons expect. Storefront signs may often be leased, but that too costs money. And then there’s the all-important matter of interior décor.
Far too many restaurants, even successful establishments, give little or no consideration to the ambiance of the diners’ surroundings. Surveys in the past have shown that to most diners, ambiance is just as important as the quality of the food they’re served.
Ethnic restaurants, in particular, suffer from this lack when so many lease vacant shops in strip malls and start cooking. In the past, most Chinese restaurants, for example, made every effort to create a feeling of dining in China. Silk walls in muted reds, Oriental lanterns over tables, high-back booths offering a feeling of a private box/ The list goes on.
A recent experience in a Mongolian Barbecue Specialty restaurant could have been so much better if only a little effort had gone into its décor — and loud renditions of songs by Elvis scarcely added to that feeling of dining before a Yurt in outer Mongolia.
Another recent, tragic example is a little restaurant in another strip mall. I’ll get to the name in a moment but beneath the large sign, in smaller letters were the words BBQ & BREW.
Inside, it turned out to be self-serve. At the register, an indifferent person took our order. Not seeing any taps or other signs of beer, I asked the clerk, and without a word, he pointed down to the side where a small inset in the wall held eight or ten soda cans of beer. I had never seen or heard of any of these and that was all he had to offer. The price for one was also ridiculously high.
I promised the name of the shop. It was Side Burns and when the sign went up I honestly thought this was going to be a barber shop. Sadly, but not surprisingly, the shop didn’t stay open over a month.
I think most persons who want to open a restaurant will have had experience and probably some knowledge of cooking. Many have a love for cooking and really feel a passion for getting in that kitchen.
That’s wonderful and I can empathize with those entrepreneurs. Some have a specialty, such as pies, or pot pies or Mexican cuisine, Thai cuisine and so on. They have some particular specialty they believe will make their restaurant stand out from the crowd.
With the proper funding, the right menu, the right location, and a great name combined with the proper décor and ambiance, it’s possible not only to have a great success but today more than ever, this can lead to selling franchises – but dealing with that aspect of the business is a whole ‘nother ballgame. Just get that first puppy on its feet and we’ll talk.
One taquería opened nearby and the owner chose a location that sits far back in a ho-hum strip mall. It’s hard to see, and its yellow sign is impossible to read from a passing automobile. It’s also severely hampered by a much more popular franchise Mexican restaurant that not has an attractive exterior, is located near the curb where it’s highly visible.
Yes, Virginia, size is important – or rather, the right size is important. Most Papa Murphy’s takeout pizzas thrive but another nearby Papa’s died because it was at least two times the necessary size. And we all know that these locations rent by the square foot. Why pay for seven or eight hundred extra feet of space that you don’t need at all?
A number of years ago, a huge nightclub flourished, but for some reason folded. The building sat empty for a considerable time and finally some intrepid soul took a chance and opened a taquería restaurant in the buildings. Obviously, it was far too large for a restaurant in its particular neighborhood. After it quietly folded, the building again sat vacant, except for the number of homeless who chose to use the location for a place to camp.
Recently, another company began a complete restoration, inside and out. This took something like a year, perhaps more. Finally, it opened, offering a restaurant during the daytime, but on the expensive side for Mexican dining, and features a night club at night with live music. Considering the neighborhood and the dining habits of our local denizens, I see little future for this expensive endeavor. I do believe the owners have the wherewithal to keep going until they see whether or not they can make a go of things.
Last but not least on this little jeremiad is another restaurant that opened across the street from the nightclub. This one is a Chinese restaurant. The street side has a very attractive sign in Chinese and English. Problem is that passing motorists can hardly see it because of the trees that try to hide the sign from them. Inside, a dish that in nearly 100% of Chinese restaurants will include rice, perhaps noodles, egg rolls, soup, etc. this one brought out a small dish of noodles costing more than most restaurants charge for the former. A cola comes from a vending machine decorating the dining room and there no free refills. Speaking of dining rooms, this “Chinese” dining room has a Western theme. The table legs are wagon wheels, etc. Presumably, because of lack of business, the owner has now papered all the windows with home-made signs. Little wonder that few people want to dine there. Besides, if some want real “authentic” Chinese food, the huge Asian grocery next door not only has a cafeteria serving the real thing but in addition to Asian and other foods, has a large bakery turning out delectable pastries.
The takeaway here is that for any business, but especially, for a successful restaurant, you not only need to offer good food at the right price but make every attempt to create the right ambiance as well. a German deli or restaurant can easily add the right touches to make guests feel that they’re dining in Germany. The same goes for Chinese, Thai, Indian, Mexican et al. A Mexican restaurant here sits back in a small strip mall. Mistake, but this place was able to overcome that mistake by offering authentic Mexican cuisine at the right price. They did try to add a few touches to create a more Mexican atmosphere. At first, they had leather and bamboo seating but it just didn’t hold up to the overwhelming crowds. This place not only offers a good variety of Mexican cuisine, but it’s somewhat more extensive than that offered by most other locations. Another authentic detail: There is a grill right out where customers can watch a señorita forming and grilling tortilla, hot and fresh, just for you. This model is always scrupulously clean and orderly. Someone constantly cleans the glass door to remove any fingerprints and you never see anyone standing around chatting.
There are two last easily corrected faults that no restaurateur should ever allow:
When employees are on breaks or otherwise not working, they should remain out the sight of guests. Guests are really annoyed when they sit at a table waiting patiently (or otherwise) for service while an employee sits or stands talking to someone, completely ignoring them.
The second is for employees to stand around visiting with one another at any time. They aren’t being to visit or entertain one another and no owner or manager should ever allow this. The manager has an obligation to keep the ship on even keel, and in the end, it’s the owner who has to pay the bills.

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Build a new website of Restaurant and Catering Company

Build a new website of Restaurant and Catering Company
Existing Restaurant for 14 years is setting up catering business to cater corporate and other bulk orders.
We “Indian Palace Restaurant LLC” UAE would like to introduce ourselves as one of the leading Restaurant and outdoor catering business unit in Sharjah rendering quality services to our customers and institutes, with the help of a team of qualified professional backing us. “Indian Palace Restaurant is a Sharjah based Restaurant and outdoor catering services specialized in fresh and tasty food by using only the finest and freshest ingredients. Indian Palace Restaurant has been established in 2004 and is considered as one of the market leaders in this region. Many of experience have led Indian Palace Restaurant to prove the highest quality, reliability and standard in developing and producing fresh and tasty food.
Indian Palace Restaurant was formed to provide the best food with a professional touch of homely taste and service, which leads to our success and resulted in constant search of innovation, intelligent creativity for over 10+ years of experience. Indian Palace Restaurant team has a skill to prepare and service the best tongue touching taste. We bring you a one of a kind experiences with sophisticated service and exquisite cuisine. Our specialized catering team is equipped to handle anything from a small crowd of 30 to a large-scale event of 2000 attendees.
“Indian Palace Restaurant” follows a completely automated system to work to control its inventory and strives to achieve a healthy and satisfactory culture at work.
Our experience in this specialized field extends over 14 + years rendering quality services to our customers and institutes, with the help of a team of qualified professional backing us.
The benefits of our economies of scale are shared with both our customers and institutes.
Our proposal based on the menu selection as given below includes a full cost estimation.
We are very much looking forward to you and hope to hear from you soon.

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The Hirshon “Fire Cider / 4 Thieves Vinegar” Vinaigrette And Herbal Remedy

The Food Revolution Begins Now! You are here: Home / Recipes / The Hirshon “Fire Cider / 4 Thieves Vinegar” Vinaigrette And Herbal Remedy The Hirshon “Fire Cider / 4 Thieves Vinegar” Vinaigrette And Herbal Remedy March 16, 2019 1 Shares Fire Cider Vinegar pinterest.com
Citizens, the unmatched culinary wisdom that resides solely in the mighty TFD extends even further beyond cuisine into the Ultima Thule where food and medicine intersect! I have studied herbalism, both Western (English, Native American, Colonial) and Eastern (Chinese and Indian) and it is a good and pleasant opportunity today to share two of my great passions with you! The history (and legends) surrounding the components of this recipe are particularly fascinating!
My particular variation of this historic condiment is a blend of the ancient “4 Thieves Vinegar” with the modern “fire cider vinegar”– combined, it is both supremely healthful as well as spicy AND delicious!
Four thieves vinegar (also called Marseilles vinegar, Marseilles remedy, prophylactic vinegar, vinegar of the four thieves, camphorated acetic acid, vinaigre des quatre voleurs and acetum quator furum) is a concoction of vinegar (either from red wine, white wine, cider, or distilled white) infused with herbs, spices or garlic that was believed to protect users from the plague. The recipe for this vinegar has almost as many variations as its legend.
This specific vinegar composition is said to have been used during the medieval period when the black death was happening to prevent the catching of this dreaded disease. Other similar types of herbal vinegars have been used as medicine since the time of Hippocrates.
Early recipes for this vinegar called for a number of herbs to be added into a vinegar solution and left to steep for several days. The following vinegar recipe hung in the Museum of Paris in 1937, and is said to have been an original copy of the recipe posted on the walls of Marseilles during an episode of the plague:
Take three pints of strong white wine vinegar, add a handful of each of wormwood, meadowsweet, wild marjoram and sage, fifty cloves, two ounces of campanula roots, two ounces of angelic, rosemary and horehound and three large measures of champhor. Place the mixture in a container for fifteen days, strain and express then bottle. Use by rubbing it on the hands, ears and temples from time to time when approaching a plague victim.
Plausible reasons for not contracting the plague was that the herbal concoction contained natural flea repellents, since the flea is the carrier for the plague bacillus, Yersinia pestis. Wormwood has properties similar to cedar as an insect repellent, as do aromatics such as sage, cloves, camphor, rosemary, campanula, etc. Meadowsweet, although known to contain salicyclic acid, is mainly used to mask odors like decomposing bodies.
Another recipe called for dried rosemary, dried sage flowers, dried lavender flowers, fresh rue, camphor dissolved in spirit, sliced garlic, bruised cloves, and distilled wine vinegar.
Modern day versions of four thieves vinegar include various herbs that typically include sage, lavender, thyme, and rosemary, along with garlic. Additional herbs sometimes include rue, mint, and wormwood. It has become traditional to use four herbs in the recipe—one for each thief, though earlier recipes often have a dozen herbs or more. It is still sold in Provence. In Italy a mixture called “seven thieves vinegar” is sold as a smelling salt, though its ingredients appear to be the same as in four thieves mixtures.
The usual story shared about the origin of this vinegar was that a group of thieves during a European plague outbreak were robbing the dead or the sick. When they were caught, they offered to exchange their secret recipe, which had allowed them to commit the robberies without catching the disease, in exchange for leniency. Another version says that the thieves had already been caught before the outbreak and their sentence had been to bury dead plague victims; to survive this punishment, they created the vinegar. The city in which this happened is usually said to be Marseille or Toulouse, and the time period can be given as anywhere between the 14th and 18th century depending on the storyteller.
One interesting twist says that “four thieves vinegar” is simply a corruption of the original “Forthave’s vinegar,” a popular concoction created by an enterprising fellow by the name of Richard Forthave. Another source, the book Abregé de tout la médecine practique (published in 1741), seems to attribute its creation to George Bates, though Bates’ own published recipe for antipestilential vinegar in his Pharmacopoeia Bateana does not specifically use the name ‘thieves’ or ‘four thieves.’
As for fire cider, I share this gem from marthastewart.com:
Are you a fire cider convert yet? A longtime favorite in the herbal community, this DIY tonic is finally gaining mainstream popularity. Our test kitchen editors have been fans for years, and we were curious about why it’s currently having a moment, so we went straight to the source, Rosemary Gladstar, the respected herbalist, teacher, and author who came up with fire cider (and coined its catchy name!) in the late 1970s.
The original formula calls for macerating fresh horseradish, ginger, garlic, onions, and cayenne pepper in apple-cider vinegar for three to four weeks, then finishing with honey. Gladstar says, “At the time, I really wanted vinegar tinctures to take off, so I came up with this recipe and thought the combination of flavors was fabulous — hot, sour, pungent, and sweet. Not only does it taste good, but it’s also easy to make and uses common herbs that you can get from your backyard or local grocery store.”
After that first batch, she taught her students how to make fire cider, sold it at her herb store in Sonoma county, and published the recipe in her first book, “Herbal Healing for Women.” It has since been adapted countless times (including by our own test kitchen!), sold by other herbal companies, cited in several books, and added to the winter health curriculum at many herbal schools.
Gladstar breaks down what each ingredient brings to the table:
Apple-cider vinegar is a great digestive aid.
Horseradish is the number-one herb for combating sinus congestion and headaches. It clears your sinuses better than anything; even when you’re just grating it, by the time you’re done, your sinuses are wide open.
Ginger is a warming circulatory herb that’s wonderful for digestion. It also helps fight infection and is good for nausea.
Garlic is the poor man’s penicillin. It has broad-spectrum antimicrobial and antibacterial properties and is an excellent aid for fighting infection. It also produces a heat that helps lower cholesterol.
Onions have similar properties to garlic and are also good for colds and flus.
Cayenne pepper is one of the best cardiovascular herbs. It helps your immune system mobilize and moves blood through the system.
Honey is very soothing for inflamed tissues and organs, but its primary purpose is as a harmonizer or buffer. It helps blend all the flavors in fire cider and makes it palatable not just to your taste buds, but to your whole digestive system.
Gladstar recommends that first-timers dilute the tonic with a little warm water or apple cider. Once you’re a convert, try drinking it straight — our test kitchen swears by a daily one-to-two-ounce shot. If you feel a cold or flu coming on, take smaller amounts more frequently — such as half a shot glass two or three times a day — to keep your immune system healthy. You can also swap out regular vinegar for fire cider in salad dressings.
My genius idea to fuse these two recipes together is further enhanced by the addition of not just apple cider vinegar – but to use an an infused cider vinegar with 14 herbs – this is a common cure-all in Appalachia as well as Amish regions. It adds notes of flavor and a symphony of health benefits. This is what I use in the recipe and for myself – but you can also just use plain apple cider vinegar if you so prefer. Only Bragg’s brand cider vinegar please – it has the “mother” still in it – the good bacteria that makes apple cider vinegar so potent from a health perspective.
Lastly, I call for the incredible health benefit of manuka honey from New Zealand – read all about it (and buy a bottle) here .
Enjoy this unique fusion of ancient and modern herbalism and know you are protected from both the plague and a whole host of other ailments by the awe and splendor that alone is The Food Dictator! 🙂
Battle on – The Generlaissimo The Hirshon “Fire Cider Vinegar” Vinaigrette And Herbal Remedy Rate this recipe

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Langza – A Complete Travel Guide

Tweet Email + The mini world of Langza
After braving the fury of monsoon, landslides, washed down roads and a grueling ride of almost thirty hours from Delhi (all these hurdles added many extra hours), when we finally stepped out of the car near Battal, we almost screamed with ecstasy as we looked up at the night sky. It was beaming with millions of stars, something we had never seen before. And we hadn’t even reached the magical valley of Spiti yet. It was just the beginning. This was a few years back when the valley was not frequented by many people. Majestic Spiti is a world within the world
The high altitude villages of Spiti valley have a character of their own. The people have a simple but hard lifestyle. Spitian way of life is totally in sync with the terrain’s unforgiving geography and weather.
There are many hidden gems in Spiti, such as – Kibber, Langza, Komic, Hikkim, Demul, Lhalung, Dhankar, Gette, Chicham, – all of which are a day’s ride from Kaza. In this series of posts, I am going to write the detailed guides to some of them. If you want to take a sneak-peek into the Spitian way of life, then do spend a night or two in these hamlets.
So, let’s start with Langza and explore its mini-world! About Langza
Located at an altitude of 14,500 feet, Langza is one of the remotest villages of India. Green fields besotted on brown hills and distinctive houses constructed in Tibetan style architecture sums up the pictorial representation of Langza. Envelop this picture with surrounding snow-capped peaks and it completes the breathtaking view of Langza village. Langza village
Spitian villages are geographically demarcated into upper and lower parts. Langza is no exception, lower part of the village is termed Langza Yongma and the upper one is Langza Gongma. Langza Gongma houses the Lang, local village temple. A massive statue of Lord Buddha guarding the hamlet is the tallest structure here, which is also the most popular picture of Langza on internet. Another striking feature of the village – the Chau Chau Kang Nilda peak – adorns its landscape majestically. History Archaeological Significance
Langza and many other villages of Spiti were submerged under the ancient geological Tethys Ocean, more than 200 million years ago. It inhabited many varieties of Mesozoic marine animals. It is difficult to imagine that this land could have been a huge ocean!
Around 50 million years ago, the Himalayan range and the Tibetan Plateau emerged from the collision between the tectonic plates of two supercontinents (Laurasia and Gondwana), which made the Tethys ocean disappear. Fossils of marine animals living under Tethys sea are found today in Langza and neighboring villages. Today if you take a spade and start digging anywhere around Langza, you would definitely find a fossil or two to your amazement. Spiti and Pin Valleys are full of marine fossils.
Finding a marine fossil at Himalayas is one of the most unexpected and exciting things to do at Langza. However, it is equally important to realize the archaeological importance of these fossils and preserve this unique geographical feature of Himalayas. Cultural Heritage
Spiti’s climate is harsh but the valley is resplendent with ancient traditions, customs and craft. In olden days, due to extremities of climate and difficult terrain, residents of Spiti lived in complete isolation from outer world. This is the reason why they were able to preserve their culture and local craft. The Buddha and the Peak
One such ancient art form is Zama pottery, which was the main occupation of Langza village traditionally. This heritage form of clay pottery originated in Spiti valley because of the presence of yellow and black clay in the region. The necessity to make pots for various household uses gave birth to Zama pottery. Now steel, plastic and china wares have become widely available in the valley. It prompted the craftsmen to diversify into making decorative pots, lamps and other artifacts. Some potters at Langza inherited the art form from their forefathers and still practice it. Agriculture has replaced Zama pottery as the key source of income and occupation for Langza’s population.
Langza is believed to have derived its name from ‘La’ (mountain pass) and ‘Za’ (from Zama). According to another theory, Langza’s name is adopted from ‘Lang’- the village temple. With a population of less than 150 people residing in almost 35 houses, Langza is a little paradise. Location
Langza village is in the heart of Spiti valley, 16 kms away from the townlet of Kaza, the headquarters of Lahaul and Spiti. Best Time to Visit Winter
Langza’s weather is cold and dry. Winter months are extremely harsh with temperature dropping as low as -20 degrees. Several feet of snow blankets the region, which makes reaching Langza a challenging task in this season. Rohtang pass shuts down due to heavy snow, which strikes out the option of Manali to Kaza drive in winters. Though depending on road conditions you can still reach via Shimla-Kinnaur (Hindustan Tibet road). For more details on winter adventures to Spiti read our article on How to plan a trip to Spiti Valley in Winters Summer
Summer witnesses very bright sun, as altitude increases the intensity of sunshine. Though nights are still cold and require woolens. Summer, spring and autumn are the most convenient seasons to visit Langza because of ease of accessibility and road conditions. Monsoon
Monsoon months don’t see much rain or no rain at all. But the roads leading to Spiti from Manali or Shimla witness rainfall and landslides. Roads become slushed and erupted, making it a battle to drive on. Expect long delays and unplanned stop overs due to weather and road conditions. All these make for a compelling case to avoid monsoon travels to trans-Himalayas. Rains make the roads slushed and bumpy
Best time to visit Langza or Spiti valley depends on the route you take and the kind of experience you are seeking. For a detailed and month-by-month guide on when to travel to Spiti, please refer to our article ‘ Best Time to Visit Spiti Valley – A Month by Month Guide ’ What to Do
Langza is a small and remote village, devoid of much tourism intervention, except the development of some homestays in the recent past. The best thing to do at Langza is to live and experience the thousand year old culture and the company of its people. The Buddha Statue
As you approach Langza from Kaza, you start seeing a humongous golden colored statue of Buddha from a kilometer away. In the serenity which surrounds all mortal beings at Langza, this statue of Buddha seems like watching over the world (given the elevation of Spiti valley, it might be true 🙂 Buddha Statue at Langza The Lang
Lang, the ancient village temple is a seat of great significance for locals as it is believed that all the deities of Spiti Valley reside here, like a spiritual nerve center of the valley. Finding Fossils
Langza is a treasure trove for archaeology researchers. Several locations at Pin valley and Spiti valley are rich in marine fossil. Among these places, Langza is one where these fossils are easily discover-able and the village has a high concentration of Ammonites – a kind of fossils. Most visible at Langza, ammonites are spiral shaped fossils dating back to late Jurassic era. They became extinct during the same period when dinosaurs did. There is a chaudua (local name for fossils) center in the village. You might see little kids or local shops selling these fossils to you for anything between 10 – 100 rupees. A marine fossil found in Langza Travelers are more than glad to take fossils home as souvenirs. However, with increasing number of people doing this, the fossils themselves are becoming extinct in the region. Locals and travelers must understand the importance of containing these fossils within the area. They are not just archaeologically significant but are also a heritage. Taking them away might lead to destroying a key link in the geological history of our subcontinent.
I urge all our readers to not buy or take these fossils from Langza or its neighborhood. Instead, opt for the mud replicas of fossils made by locals or take home zama pots as souvenirs. This will in turn help in promoting the dying art of zama mud craft as well. Farms
Fields of Langza make a greater part of the village and imparts an astoundingly green look to the otherwise brown and white cold desert. The uneven elevation of this landscape creates an illusion of sorts and looks mystical.
In the olden era, when the weather of Spiti was harsher and connectivity to the world almost zero, the only crop grown by the villagers here was potato. Now with the warming of our planet and better farming tools, crops such as barley and sweet peas are also grown here along with potatoes. Fields of Langza
However, the only source of irrigation for farming at Langza is still the water of streams originating at Chau Chau Kang Nilda peak. If unfortunately, there is lesser snowfall during winter, it directly impacts the creation of water streams and hence the farming output. Beneath all the beauty lies the extremely difficult living conditions.
Agriculture is now the main occupation of Langza village. People depend on it for their food as well as a source of income. Now tourism is developing in the region and has also added to the income of residents. However, livestock rearing and farming are still the key occupations. Night Photography
Langza is heaven for photography enthusiasts. With minimal of techniques and software, one can click the most beautiful of pictures here. Every nook and corner of Langza is worth capturing in the camera. Because this is unlike anything you will ever see in a city or even lower Himalayas. The light during the day is crisp because of the height and clear skies provide the perfect background for day-photography
Night photography in Spiti valley is a different ball-game altogether. When you can see the great Milky Way with naked eyes, a giant of a Moon and millions of stars against the clearest of sky, what more can you possibly ask for to give you the clicks of your lifetime. So, do not forget to pack your camera and accessories to bring to this paradise. Do check out our article on how to pack and take care of laptops, cameras and other gadgets at high altitudes . The Peak (Chau Chau Kang Nilda )
Langza village flourishes under the shadow of a snow-covered peak, Chau Chau Kang Nilda (translated as snow-capped mountain princess of the sun and dawn). Legends and myths galore about this peak in the village, like most old Himalayan villages. It is the tallest peak in the region, towering more than 20,000 feet. Chau Chau Kang Nilda Peak
View of the peak from Langza is majestic and peaceful. If you want to attempt climbing the peak, you would need professional guides, proper gear and prior experience of mountaineering. The height and clime makes it a challenging ascend. Snow Leopard Spotting
Langza and surrounding areas in the Spiti valley are home to the elusive snow leopard. Many travellers stay at Langza during winters in their quest to have a glimpse of the animal. For the adventure seekers, looking for the big cat in a landscape covered with thick snow is an experience of a lifetime.
According to a recent news report , snow-leopard sightings have increased in Spiti valley. The success rate of snow leopard sightings in Spiti is over 50 percent, which is the highest in the world. The animal has found a safe heaven in Spiti because the residents have started protecting it and learnt to live with it.
You will need a local guide to help with snow-leopard spotting who knows the trails. Several operators in Kaza arrange for the excursion. Experience the Lifestyle People
Despite the life’s challenges, people of Langza are a happy and kind lot. They are generous and welcome strangers in their homes for a meal and board. There are no accommodation options in the village except a few homestays. They are happy to share a slice of their lives with you. Culture
People of Langza follow Sankayapa sect of Buddhism. The land’s vicinity and geographical similarity to Tibet has influenced its citizens for centuries. There is no doubt that followers of Buddhist practices are more contended and joyful than rest of the world. May be that’s the secret of Langza’s happiness too. I believe that their unique cultural and religious practices also play a significant role in adding charm to their lives.
Their rich heritage is reflected in the temples, monasteries and various art forms, especially Zama pottery. There are very few of potters left in the village who are trying to preserve this dying art. If you get a chance, do meet one of the potters and try to get a first hand experience at it. They would be happy to make a pot or two for you! Houses
A terrain as hostile as Spiti, require houses which are not just comfortable but are also weather compliant. Langza is dotted with ‘mud-brick’ houses, built in a symmetric and uniform architecture. You notice them instantly as you enter the village, as they give a unique look to the landscape.
A typical house in Langza consists of a huge kitchen, which is also the family room as most families like to eat together near the heat of ‘angeethi’ and stay in the warmth of kitchen. There is a dry toilet in every house, which comprises of four walls and a pit dug in the floor. Besides this, they all have an area for household animals, storage and a few other rooms.
The brick, mud and wood structure helps keep the house warm from inside during extreme winter, even when the exterior is covered with deep snow. All the houses are painted in white, with blue window and red border. The similarity is alluring. Square house with a number of square windows, here is a glimpse. Life
Langza is an unusual village, and changing seasons bring a huge change in the lives of its residents. The sun is harsh in summers and mountains are brown. There is barely any or no rain during monsoon months and winter is unforgiving.
Summer is the time of work for Langza. Everyone works on crops (barley, potatoes and peas), take care of their flock of animals and stock up for winter months. Things have improved now with better roads connectivity but winter is still not the time to venture out. Kaza is the nearest town and market. When you visit Langza, some villagers might ask you for a ride till Kaza, most of us are more than happy to help those smiling red faces 🙂
The barren winter is the season to eat, drink, festivities and to chill (quite literally!). One of the residents told us that their daily routine during winter months goes like – they wake up, clear up the piled up snow from their yards, take care of the livestock and wait out the tough months. Bone freezing temperature at Langza doesn’t leave much scope for going out for work or food. Sights like these are common in villages of Spiti valley Food
Eat local, and that is your only option at Langza! Locals are warm and welcoming like in most Himalayan villages. If you are spending a night at Langza, your hosts would treat you with delicious local delicacies. Simple home cooked meals here comprise of rice, dal, rajma or black kidney beans and mixed vegetable. Tibetan fares are such as thukpa, thenthuk, local stew is common too. Barley is a local crop here and villagers make the most of it – from breads (with honey) to porridge and laddoos to tea. Yes, Barley tea. Try if you can get to taste it there. It is also the source of making local liquor (barley beer). Tibetan food is an important part of the local cuisine
Breakfast usually is made of bread, butter, jam and eggs along with mint tea or ginger black tea. I personally loved the local black tea with lots of ginger in it. The drink gave ultimate comfort in that cold weather. How To Reach
Langza is a remote village and does not have direct rail or air connectivity. Road
If you are already in Kaza, then Langza is almost an hour’s drive away (16 kms). There aren’t any direct buses from Kaza to Langza. Your options are limited here, you will have to either hire a taxi or hitch-hike. Some adventurous souls walk the entire distance. Kaza is connected to Manali, Shimla and Chandigarh by a network of buses. Shimla and Chandigarh buses reach Reckong Peo and from here you have to board another bus to Kaza. Winding roads around Kaza
Another option is to drive all the way to Kaza from any of these towns. We reached Manali from Delhi boarding an overnight bus. From Manali we took a detour to Chandratal, spent couple of nights there and then proceeded with our onward journey to Kaza.
It is imperative to have some experience of driving on tough mountain roads if you choose to self-drive on this route. Roads are dangerous, hostile, flooded with water at times and stones fall over head due to the fragility of the terrain. Train
The nearest train station is Joginder nagar (364 kms from Kaza), which is a narrow gauge station and receives train from Pathankot railway station (broad gauge). Major nearest railway station is Chandigarh (500 kms from Kaza). Air
Chandigarh is the nearest international airport and Bhuntar (Kullu) is the nearest domestic airport with limited flight connectivity.
The onward journey in case of rail and air travel has to be via road (taxi/ self-drive or bus). For details on public transport around Spiti valley, refer to our previous article How to make a budget trip to Spiti Valley by public transport . Barren mountains and deep valleys accompany you throughout Spiti valley Where to Stay
Langza’s increasing popularity among travelers has encouraged the development of home-stays run by locals which are built in the traditional Spitian way. They provide basic facilities and home cooked food. Most of them run on solar power , ensuring uninterrupted supply of electricity. Most of the hosts are happy to help their guests with local excursions and treks. Here are some recommended home-stays: Tenzi Homestay
This is a five bedroom home-stay with comfortable beds and attached bathrooms (only 2 rooms). Per night stay with breakfast and dinner costs INR 700- for rooms with attached bath and INR 1000-for rooms with separate bathroom. You may contact the host at 0-9459566627. See more details in our article on Spiti homestays Lara’s Homestay
This homestay is an amalgamation of tradition and modernity. It has five comfortable and clean rooms, furnished in a local way but provides modern facilities like attached bathroom, western toilet, room heaters and hot water geysers. However, all these facilities come at a considerably higher cost than other options. One night stay here for double sharing and two meals is for Rs. 3500. You may contact the host Lara Tsering at 0-9418537689. Langza Homestay by Homestaysofindia
This is a four rooms accommodation (1 single, 1 double and 2 triple sharing) Rooms have attached bathroom (hot water and western toilets). Similar to other home-stays, you would get good local home-cooked meals here. The host Anjan is a qualified mountaineer and trekking guide who can help with your excursions. Cost for single person per night is INR 850 including breakfast, dinner and unlimited tea. Itinerary
Langza can be included in your Spiti Valley itinerary as a day’s trip from Kaza. However, I recommend spending a night at any of the homestays in the village to experience the local hospitality and culture. Day 1 Reach Langza from Kaza via car or taxi in the morning. Visit the village lang (temple) and the statue of Buddha. Stroll through the fields and try your hand at pea-plucking (if in season). You might just spot yaks and sheep lazing around. Meet with the local Zama potters and experience the ancient mud art. Don’t forget to take souvenir pots. Explore marine fossils, visit the chauda center in the village. Collection and possession of fossils is illegal, though locals sell it for small amounts of money. Spend the night at a local homestay and enjoy their hospitality. Try night-sky photography, if it interests you. The opportunities for photography at Langza are endless. Day 2 Head for the neighboring villages of Hikkim or Komic. Spend a night at these villages if you wish or head back to Kaza the same day. If high altitude treks interest you, you can go for the two small lakes (Tsonyeti and Chumo Tso) near Langza. They are located at an altitude of 14,000-15,000 feet. Given the distance and elevation, reserve a day for the hike. Return to Kaza the next day. Important Tips Langza is located deep inside a cold desert. The weather gets harsh. The terrain and ecology is fragile and landslides are common. Sypply of electricity is sparse and irregular, except for establishments which run on solar power. At more than 14,000 feet, Langza poses AMS challenges to many travelers. Although if you acclimatize well at lower altitudes (Manali/ Shimla, Reckong Peo/ Kaza), you are unlikely to experience AMS at Langza. Still the air is thin and altitude might take a toll. If you are planning for a trek in the region then prepare for contingencies. There are no mobile phone signals at Langza, except BSNL/MTNL – which again depends on availability of electricity powering the mobile towers and weather conditions. Outside Langza (on roads) even BSNL signals become weak or disappear altogether. For details on mobile phone connectivity in Spiti valley, refer to our article on 11 Tips on Mobile Phone Connectivity in Spiti Valley Conclusion
Langza is a distant and off-beat place in western Himachal which presents unique experiences to travellers and explorers. If you want to visit the place with family, plan well in advance and prepare for the expected challenges. This place gives you tranquility, lifestyle of the people here teaches us human values and importance of things that we take for granted in life. The landscape leaves you spellbound. Spiti valley is ancient and it succeeded in preserving its environment and culture only because of the difficulty in reaching this hostile terrain. Some paleontologists describe Spiti as the ‘Museum of Indian Geology’. This itself sums up the importance of preserving this ecologically and geologically sensitive zone. Rising tourism in the past few years has eroded the valley in several ways. DoW has been leading many initiatives to promote sensible and responsible tourism in the region by educating the locals and travelers. Empowering the locals with eco-friendly practices and encouraging the travelers to follow these practices is extremely important and is also our duty. Rising tourism in the past few years has eroded the valley in several ways. DoW has been leading many initiatives to promote sensible and responsible tourism in the region by educating the locals and travelers. Empowering the locals with eco-friendly practices and encouraging the travelers to follow these practices is extremely important and is also our duty.
I hope, this detailed guide to Langza will help you to plan your journey better.
Do you still have any questions or suggestions or need any help in planning your trip to Langza? If yes, please feel free to post them either in the comments section of this article below or direct message on Instagram. You can also take guidance from many travel experts in our DoW Community Forums and discuss your upcoming travel plans.
If you like the article, it with any of your family or friends who are planning a trip to Langza or Spiti Valley. Happy traveling to you!!!
Do follow @soulful_worldview on Instagram for updates on my next adventure. A post shared by Anchal (@soulful_worldview) on Aug 13, 2018 at 10:46pm PDT

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