Posts tagged ‘Lahore’

May 10, 2014

Shaukat Khan Continues to Inspire NCA Students

by Khanum

The wonderful world of Shaukat Khan is filled with Holiday cruising adventures, Awareness Campaigns and fantastic art works. He doesn’t just write travelogues telling interesting stories about every place he visits but also paints such fantastic things. Have a look at the picture below. This was painted by him during his Save The Disappearing Flora & fauna Of Rainforest campaign. 

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I admire his work, especially the one he put on Saatchi Online. Do check it out. There’s a painting by the name, Fantasy Butterfly. It’s so unique and colorful! Simply splendid work.

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On Wednesday, He gave a marvelous presentation on Ship Cruising before leaving Pakistan. Did I mention he’s settled in UK?

The event started off with a slide show on Flora and Fauna campaign and then escalated with his presentation on Cruising Holidays. All the students just simply loved the idea of cruising  and pictures from all over the world that he been to on ship. Every eye was mesmerized, every student had his breath taken away. I was given the task to photograph the event but even I was so taken away with the presentation on a big screen that I stopped clicking my camera for awhile.

Here are some of the pictures from the presentation day.10396522_854766164551664_1279463371_n1 10405897_854765447885069_1143061343_n 10374274_854765861218361_1725397830_n1

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P.S. He’s my Uncle.

 

April 20, 2014

The Whirling Dervishes & The Jumping Gilgit Men

by Khanum

I had another blast just few hours ago. I was taken to Gilgit, Baluchistan, Kashmir,  some more places and ahan!  Konya, Turkey!!

I got to Enjoy that famous Turkish dance, yup, that whirling dervishes performance where they spin round and round endlessly.

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Are you kidding me, Khanum?

No, I am serious. But I didn’t actually go to all those place, All this was brought  right here in Lahore at Expo Centre, Cultural Night, infact. Not only this, I also got to enjoy a dance performance by gilgit group.

I must say it was my favorite one out of all the performances. It was soothing and beautiful.

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The men in the background played beautiful flute or sitar, whatever it was, while two men danced so elegantly on stage in white  shalwar kameez. The amazing thing was their jumps! Yup, they jumped so high many times in it. Ooooo it was so entertaining! Look again, at the jump!

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Then a 3rd one joined them on stage and it got all bomb amazing.

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So good that even Turkish dervish dance performers couldn’t help but observe them from behind the curtain. Have a look at the picture below! See, how amused the man is  behind the curtain at backstage ?

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This was very new to me. I am not a concert person. Nor it was a concert but somewhat near to that. The Turkish performance was not as I imagined it would be, I was waiting for a moment when I would feel a certain emotion and go in trance or something. But It was rather strange, I wonder how they could say that this specific dance was a form of worship. How can an act of worship be  a performance that needs an audience any way?

But I have to say the stamina these men displayed was enormous. They kept whirling for like an hour or maybe more than that. It requires stamina and alot of patience. That’s the only inspiration this could convey.

Perhaps I need to go to Turkey to see the real thing.  And to china as well. Because the Dragon dance that was the second biggest attraction of the night got cancelled at the last minute. I was very disappointed. Let’s hope they arrange another cultural night for that. However, I would appreciate it if they would make it less noisy. I don’t know , maybe its me, but my head was already aching bad after an hour inside that auditorium. Do I need to add that few people among the Pakistani audience are total idiots? Why the heck they had to whistle even at the Whirling Dervishes performance is beyond me. Clapping out of the blue was another hilarious and entirely crazy act. Minus that, it was a GREAT night for Photography. Hope you like the pictures out of the 500 that I took! Lol

 

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Another long and rather strangely new kind of performance was given by a group of men in colorful frocks. They also said their dance was “Inspired by Sufism”, by the way.

 

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The night is long gone. The performances are done, but I am still mesmerized by that one performance.

No .. not the Whirling one. But the one by The gilgit group who had amazing outfits with caps having pigeon feather on top like a crown and jumped so high while dancing. This makes me want to visit Gilgit.

A very pleasing idea.

January 5, 2014

My Friend’s Wedding at Cathedral Church of Resurrection, Lahore

by Khanum

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December 28th, 2013 was a different day for me. At 11:am in the morning, my mother woke me up with a great good lecture.  I was  late for the church to attend my friend’s Marriage ceremony, so naturally I ran to washroom with the bullet speed.

And got out the same moment. With the bullet speed of course. There was no hot water to take bath with. Masha Allah!

Freezing, yelling, I managed to get fresh, put on my white dress, do quick make up and jump into heels which I literally hate wearing but have to for the sake of “Getting dressed well”.

The day was here. The big day When I was to witness a Christian wedding in a Church I had never seen before from the inside. Having no decent camera to shoot with, I counted big time on my cell.

The loyal battery died right on the spot.

My Muslim friend picked me up from my home around 1:30.  Heck! We were late. Reached Church at 2:am. Heck again! The bride was late. Ceremony started around 3:30. Heck LOL! Father of the Church was also late.

Dear Ladies & Gentlemen! That’s how Pakistanis wedding start  — regardless of their different religious affiliations.

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Everything was really new. And some moments were funny as hell. When father asked the Groom to show consent for the marriage whether he accepts the bride or not, The Groom bhai was totally confused and in that innocent confusion he babbled, “Kia kehna hai?” 😮

The bride couldn’t control her laughter at this point, neither could we all. They were after all, cousins. Not strangers.

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These are the photos from the wedding, That I hope you all enjoy. I can’t upload all the pictures as they are private but these few glimpses are sure going to make you smile 🙂 I tried to capture the architectural marvels of the Church for you guys but it was bit hard with the camera that I had in hand. But You would be able to see the glass paint work in one of the pictures where they have painted Jesus a.s as per their imagination on a cross. 

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“You can kiss the bride now” , didn’t happen. On the bright side, I did end up catching the flower bouquet of the bride though, which you often see in Movies how the bride throws off her bouquet at the girls  to catch of course. Heck. I was more worried about getting injured instead.

It was Hilarious! Everyone shouted for me to catch it. For my mother it was more like a matter of life and death. “YOU HAVE TO CATCH IT, PERVISHA! You HAVE to!” … ah yes mom.

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It was a beautiful day. Both looked great. I saw my shy friend getting married and even though only me and my other friend along with our moms were the only Muslims present there, There wasn’t any awkwardness in the environment. I realized, marriage no matter where it happens, is a touching ceremony in one’s life.

There was laughter, joy, love and anticipation for lunch.

Now I wanna attend the weddings of Jews, Parsi and Hindus. I want to see how things are done in their culture. Its a very informative experience.  Trust me.

December 17, 2013

Delicious Chicken Irani Boti at Bundu Khan & My Pakistani Sentiments.

by Khanum

Yesterday was girls day out.

My mother determined to take me out of my square room decided to lure me into fried finger fish trap. Because she was bored. And sick of cooking.

And trust me, its not really that easy to make me get out of my blanket and wash face with real water like water when its freezing cold in December. Not even shopping for new sneakers could shake me, but fish did. Somehow I got dressed. My sadness of nothing began to fade away.

In fact first I tried to make excuses to escape from this like look! omg! How foggy it is out there. But Mom is a mom for a reason you know. I wore blue she wore green and voila! After praying zuhr, I was on my way to eat fried fish from Bundu Khan. Mom had to make a stop at hyperstar to buy some bakery. It has got awesome bakery. Thats the only thing I like about that place. Other than that I hate the fact that hyperstar wouldn’t even let you drink anything inside the building. Even if you’re dying.

Anywho, I bought some of  my bakery stuff too. And the types of bread I got deserves a post on its on. I wanted to get baking utensils too but my budget was off already. So, happy and contended, I happily hopped my way to Bundu Khan because  I was simply in love with their fried fish until I met with a new cuisine.

Chicken Irani Boti (Grilled)

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Behold! The best chicken boti I have ever tasted (if my faulty memory serves me right). I swear I loved it! This is the dish which I have been introduced to by an Iranian I interviewd during my thesis days. He told me how Pakistan food is so spicy and how very nice and less spicy their food is. I got hold of their chicken tikka recipe and voila! I cooked it in summers but didn’t block it.

When I ordered fish finger, I had to order something more and new for my mother. She’s a high blood pressure patient and eating fish simply means high BP. So after thinking much, I narrowed down to Irani grilled chicken boti. I knew it would be something similar to the dish I had prepared at home but boy! Served with Naan this was even more delicious.

Before it got served, I forbade mom to taste any dish before I have photographed it to my heart’s content for blog. But the moment it got on table I forgot my own words and attacked the food. I was hungry. 😦

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Sunny sides of the dish:

It was juicy, soft and served hot. Very delicious indeed. 5/5.

Not so sunny sides of the dish: 

1- Quite Expensive. It was for Rs 800 and something. I could throw a chicken party at home with that much green paper. 2/5

2-  Freaking small portions. The moment I ordered it, I got worried about the amount of pieces they would serve. You want good amount of food in front of you when you’re hungry and also when you have paid alot to get it. Total 12 pieces didn’t please me at all. That too small ones.  3/5

And I have noticed it almost everywhere in Lahore now, that serving less in plate and charging more money for it has become like a fashion. What has gone wrong with Lahoris? We are not in France where serving less is about class and money! We are Pakistanis. We are hospitable people.We like to eat and we want to eat 24/7.  It’s better we stopped coping other race on table etiquette.

Anyway, There’s always a first time for everything…coming towards Friend Finger Fish.

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I love this dish. Its the best thing I like to eat when I’m having severe flu. But this time I was terribly disappointed by Bundu Khan.

Last time in March and then before that time even, Whenever I used to eat friend finger fish at Bundu Khan, it used to be served with sandwiches. As far as I remember. But okay, maybe I am mistaking it. However, Could I mistake the quality of crisp ? This time it was served rather soggy. Soft is good but only from the inside. If the crisp that is supposed to be on the outer layer is not there, I’m sorry! It’s not served fresh and right  from the fryer. It was nor served very hot as it used to be. Really disappointed and am sure going to try out this fish somewhere else now. No more Bundu Khan for me.

Sunny sides: Out of order.

Not so sunny sides: I paid Rs 720 for something I anticipated a lot but didn’t quite enjoy it.

Final Remarks. Naan is Rs. 40. I like to enjoy I like to spend on food and fun but I also know the value of money. Especially when I’m unemployed. The reason I concluded, that why we Pakistanis spend money on expensive restaurants is because there are no good recreational activities or alternatives for enjoyment available to us. I wish Lahore had open air cafes. And some places where I can take my mother and let her enjoy quality food with quality environment around without me worrying over ridiculous bills.

After all, You can be a millionaire, but that doesn’t mean being conscious of your spending is haram on you and spending carelessly is wajib.

No more dinning out for me for atleast 3 months! -__-

November 16, 2013

Outdoor Cafes in Lahore & Around the World

by Khanum

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Outdoor cafes are fun. 

Cultures of  various famous cities and the specific feeling attached to their environment is what attracts tourists towards them from around the world. Whether its Venice , the city made on Island or Paris, The city of Love. These are just two names I gave you. Of course there are plenty of different places you visited or plan to visit , or just dream about due to their specific nature. 

Let me tell you what I’m interested in when am thinking of a journey. Street food. And Outdoor Things. Yup!I dig for streets. Architectural beauties, Buildings and monuments are also of course significant for any fantastic place but let’s just say, cleaner streets and the vibrant walls of the city is what makes me go mad with awe. Definitely because that’s what I usually don’t get to see in here. That’s right. I meant Lahore. It’s about Charming, artistic and attractive Environment! It shouldn’t be like you have to eat in 5 stars always to value and praise the city and actually like its food and living quality. All the charm a city has to offer to tourists and its own citizens even, must be out there in the streets. Right there! Not in PC’s Bukhara or Avari’s  Buffet.

We have a phrase that goes like, “Jinney lahore ni wekhya O jamya e Ni” Loosely translated as If you haven’t seen Lahore, son! You haven’t even been born yet. We have a food street that’s dedicated to food and even though its a great thing but I never felt comfortable there. In fact I have some issues. Some things are super expensive there because that’s the only food street in Lahore. Secondly, It gets congested at times. Well more like all the time. Thirdly, Women usually get teased there. I mean, its more like a family oriented place. Its not a place where you can hangout with friends or hangout with even your brother. Plus The business there is opened at nights only I guess. No morning dining or fun. There are also come cafes I believe which are great to look at but way too expensive and confined to only areas like M.M Alam road, DHA and Gulberg etc. Moreover, they are hardly outdoor ones.

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What I’m saying is, Why such beautiful food active street  is confined to one big area. Why can’t we have outdoor cafes and restaurants all over the city? They might not work in Summers but hey, they can be fantastic during winters season! So….!

Dear people who plan all these city things,

Please upgrade the city to a fine food friendly and outdoor dinning one. If the government is buying Turkish dramas, regardless if they promote Asian Turkish Muslim side or European Turkish Muslim living styles, please pay attention to what’s really healthy for us Pakistanis and can be adopted as a cool living pattern. I mean, Outdoor cafes for instance. It would make people indulge in nice recreational activities, help them develop a taste for a “zauq dar” life, Enjoy food and who knows it may also develop a sense of cleanliness in them. I mean if they like it, they would at least stop throwing garbage on the streets and keep it clean.I have visited Istanbul and they have the coolest outdoor cafes which are not only economical but also make the streets , the bazaars, the entire city look so beautiful.

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Look at that! Such a tiny congested outdoor sitting setup but hey! Look how beautifully they are making use of the tiny space and giving you an opportunity to enjoy food in open air.

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Simply beautiful. Good place for any newly weds or even an old couple to enjoy an affordable romantic meal. (Why should only 5 star places provide romantic space?)

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Okay! Now that may not look like a romantic space but it’s at least still reasonable and pretty.

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And this one’s a beautiful place. You can look at the Eiffel tower standing tall at the left side. I wonder how lucky those people are who sat right there on those white chairs and enjoyed a beautiful evening, right beside a world famous Tower. Ahhhhh!

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Vibrant ! Mesmerizing ! Pretty !

Note: I donut own the pictures presented in this post.

September 9, 2012

September Sky

by Khanum

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August 22, 2012

Morning Surprise – Where the Raavi Flows

by Khanum

Last night the sky seemed like making a promise of sending us rain in the morning. Alas, it hasn’t rained so far except for little drizzle here n there but we sure got gifted with surprisingly beautiful winds. My family dragged me from my bed this early morning to enjoy this alluring weather at Raavi River – courtesy of our chief Minister – we now have a beautiful little space there- gardens at both the sides of the Raavi road.

We walked , we talked. I walked much and talked less and ofcourse , clicked my camera alot. This morning was a wonderful surprise. We had our breakfast of halwa poori there. My eyes and head hurt  though yet it was fun.

Only after a few shots , I got tired of the heavy camera – I wanted to enjoy the winds rather than shoot as usual , so before you today  are pictures captured via cell. Samsumg Galaxy. Not bad results though. Enjoy!

On my return I came across a little league of cricketers playing at the field. They were friendly enough and also bit shy to pose for my camera. I have told them I would come again tomorrow early morning – way early around 5 and play with them as well as shoot them. With camera ofcourse.

And Now the whole Cricket Team.

And Eid finished people. I have one little surprise left though. Maybe I’ll post tormorrow. Too sleepy now.

Assalam o alaikum!