All posts tagged: Culture

Japan – First impressions

In my very first job, the first dedicated customer project that I worked for was a Japanese one- Suzuki and ever since then always wanted to visit that country. Finally I could arrive there in the summer of 2016 (June) for a short vacation of 9 days. If I have to summarize : Japan is magical. Japan is mind-boggling. Japan is mesmerizing! Here are some of the things and experiences that highlighted my stay there: 1. Courtesy: The people in Japan in general are very polite. Bowing to others is almost a routine. I have bowed to almost every person after saying : “Arigatou gozaimasu!” (Thank you!) ( Pronounced – Ari-gato go-zai-mas) . The conductor in the Shinkansen (Bullet train) will bow after he leaves your coach, the food attendant girl/lady will bow after she leaves your coach. Even the people who clean the Shinkansen train at its final destination will bow at the train coach after they are done with their job. Though many people won’t understand English, they will try to help you …

A Taste of Goa

In the month of April, 2014,  I visited Goa for the first time and that too primarily to attend the marriage of a friend. Before then, whenever I used to tell some friends that I had never been to Goa, they would give me a look as if I had committed a crime of not visiting Goa before! Goa is known primarily for it’s serene beaches and an active party life. Beyond that, there’s another part of Goa – the UNESCO World Heritage Site of  Churches and Convents of Goa, the greenery of the Western Ghats and a laid-back lifestyle. However, this post is focussed on a few Goan dishes that I had managed to sample during that visit. Goan cuisine is essentially an extension of the cuisine of the Konkan coast of India. Broadly speaking, the cuisine falls into two categories : Hindu cuisine and the Catholic cuisine. Since I had tried a fair bit of Konkan cuisine  before, this time I tried to sample a bit more of the Catholic cuisine . From the beginning of …

Nagaland (Land of Festivals : Day 0)

The state of Nagaland is just next door to my native state (Assam) – tucked away from ‘mainland’ Indian territory closer to the country of Myanmar) However it has been relatively unknown territory for me as I have only passed its commercial capital Dimapur couple of times before on the train from Guwahati to Jorhat (tea town of Assam and place of my maternal relatives). There has been a long ‘head-hunting’ tradition among the tribes of Nagaland but this practice has been banned for sometime. Also this state has a long history of a bitter ‘separatist’ movement  which of course has been witnessed in many other parts of India. However, I would prefer not to go ‘political’ here and would rather want to concentrate on one of the most photogenic tribal festivals ever in India (and maybe the world!) – The Hornbill festival and also on the beautiful hill city of Kohima. The Hornbill Festival has been organized in Kisama Heritage Village (some 10-15 km away from Kohima town) for more than a decade. The main …

Around the World in 100 Movies (Countries) : Part 1

Watching at least one movie from at least 100 countries ? Yes, I thought of this idea in around 2013 after having watched some movies from quite a number of countries before. Finally could manage to complete this mini-goal towards the end of 2014. The first foreign movie (read : Non-English and Non-Indian) which I watched was probably a French movie way back in the later part of the 1990s in Doordarshan (the national TV channel(s) network of India) when a special screening of foreign movies was happening. A girl and a guy initially was about to break-up their relationship but patched up later when they met in the airport. The guy didn’t take his flight as he wanted to stay with the girl. I don’t remember the name of the movie but the ethereal romantic nature of French movies remain etched in my mind forever. Maybe that’s when I fell in love with world cinema and try to explore the culture of countries through the medium of cinema! This blog (ie Part 1) lists a movie per …