New Years beverage

This  kombucha (dried seaweed) tea comes looking like shishi- mai (獅子舞) - the lion dance lion. You drop him in a cup, pour hot water and wait for a couple of minutes. Your patience will be rewarded with kombucha and a small chewy snack





Hiding places, Anh Cafe in Saigon

I miss cold war movies. There would often be a scene where some western agent would be interrogating a soviet spy. The spy would be tortured, asked to reveal his hideout. Groaning with pain, yet resolute, the comrade will mumble "Nyet!! kapitalisticheskaya sobaka - never!! capitalist pig!!". Well, you don't even have to tickle me - or play k-pop in endless loop, I am happy to reveal my hideouts. This particular one in Saigon is called Anh Cafe just behind the Ben Thanh Market. Spot a building trying to one up the Bitexco tower, it may not have the hight but is probably more carbon neutral with the green wall. The entry is hidden away, a narrow walkway between two shops with the walls decorated with photos. Hike up the staircase into my well appointed hideout. If you see me, say the code phrase "Привет, незнакомец", the coffee will be on me.

Stories in Saigon

The future of learning is already here. It is called communities. We had an interesting bunch - Travelers, educators, tech folks, readers and writers sharing stories of their recent adventures.

Nostalgic food from all over

Random food and beverages from my several homes. Growing up in parts of India, you often come across the Jamun tree. The fruit has a purple bitter sweet flesh. This drink from India tries to capture the flavour for urban people who miss jamun picking. Next is a popular rice cake from Hanoi, North Vietnam (thanks to childhood friend Trang for getting it for me). This cake is made by a family business in the Hang Than Street - that had many similar rice cake shops. Nguyen means origin, and Ninh is derived from the name of the hometown (Yen Ninh) of the original owner of the cake shop. Last is a well being/health drink from Indonesia, contains honey and several herbs. You can buy these sachets from convenience stores or small shops across Indonesia.