Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 1, Issue 31, Tuesday December 30, 2003






Lifestyle rodies

Banani Road No 11

Whether you're looking for a quick shopping spree, or hoping to sink your teeth into some juicy kebab, Banani Road 11 should be your destination. For people living in the northern part of Dhaka, especially the young people, this is the perfect place to spend a refreshing afternoon in.

Once upon a time, if you wanted kebab, you'd have to dash to Dhanmondi, if not Old Dhaka to get some. With outlets like Rashna Bilash, Monchere Fast Food, Kebab-e-Q, and Dhaba, serving sumptuous shwarma and other kebab delights, Road 11, Banani has been nicknamed the 'Kebab Street' and very justifiably so. By the way, if you do drop into Dhaba, do not miss the chance to try out their delicious dahi phuchka...it's out of this world!

All that spicy kebab could set your tongue on fire, and what better way to cool off than by grabbing an ice cream cone. There's the recently opened Club Gelato, with its famed Ferroro Rocher, or if you're short on cash, and still hungering for good ice cream, head on over to American Soft Ice-cream, whose Butterscotch will melt in your mouth. While we're on the subject of sweet treats, let's not forget the confectionery outlets on this road. You can take your pick from King's Confectionery, with its Malaysian delights; Hot Breads with its chocolate bon-bons; or even Shumi's Hot Cake for its ever-popular Black Forest.

The food choices aren't just limited to kebab and ice cream, however. You can step into Disha's Bistro for some continental cuisine, or Sub City for their yummy subs, Delphi for some deshi eats, or even Cheong Sing for some Oriental flavour.

Okay, food alone doesn't make for great hanging out. Banani Road 11 has a load of stores for you to browse and shop at your leisure. There's Fiza, whose accessory collection is worth a mention. Then there is a whole series of boutiques for the belles Khoobsoorty, Lace, Lamiz, and Unique Collection. There's the Gathon Sari Ghar for sari lovers, and of course Banglar Mela and Grameen Fashion Bazar for gift shopping. If casual and Western wear is more our thing, find Dhaba, and go upstairs to Much More for some good bargains. Kids and moms can visit…Kids & Moms (yes, that was deliberate) for just about anything and everything they have on their shopping list together. Right next door is the newly inaugurated Dapper Inc., with some great hand-painted home-dé
cor accessories. If you want to bring some art into your lifestyle, do take a gander at this place.

If you want to spend the afternoon pampering yourself, then women can head on to Tips & Toes or Sajai, and men can slip into Romantic Hair Styling Centre. Let's face it…if you look good, you feel great.

Other than the food and the shopping, it is the very ambience of the entire road that makes it such a great hangout. Despite so many outlets, it manages to remain enjoyably quiet. After the sun goes down and the lights come up, it takes on the feeling of a come-one-come-all party, and just driving around with that special someone, or taking a walk with your friends can be a really uplifting experience.

So, for a fun-filled day of total self-indulgence, just skeedaddle over to Banani Road 11…the hottest hangout of 2003.

By Sabrina F Ahmad Reported by Wara Karim

Life Style Travel

Krabi Beauty

With upcoming forecasts of cold waves coming from Siberia, this winter, the prospect of escaping is highly tempting. Thailand is definitely an appealing retreat. Everyone who's been to Thailand has definitely been to Bangkok and Phuket places ideal for shopping and sightseeing, but disappointingly unsuitable for relaxing. Even the beaches are too crowded and fighting for perfect sunbathing spots (and peace) can be a hassle. Yet, in Thailand lies an exotically wonderful place, which seemed to be almost too perfect to me Krabi. Krabi (pronounced Ke-ra-bi), situated almost next to Phuket, is a place few are aware of.

Whoever has seen the Hindi movie 'Kaho Na Pyar Hai' (which I am sure everyone has) will have a pretty detailed idea of what I am trying to say exotic beaches (ideal for solitude, snorkelling, boating and of course sunbathing), delicious food and interesting shopping.

Do take a look inside the tiny stalls, which you might tend to overlook. They are small, homely and contain items of unique creativity. You can actually bargain all the way to your heart's content and walk away totally satisfied. Keep your eyes peeled I actually found a fortune-teller's stall (complete with tarot cards and a crystal ball). Unfortunately my mum dragged me away before I could get my future predicted (hmm… too superstitious I guess!).

For those of you interested in some serious jewellery shopping, do take some time to visit Gems Gallery (Phuket close to Krabi). It's a place where you can purchase valuable gems (pearls, diamonds, rubies, emeralds, sapphires, peridots you name it, they have it) and also learn a lot about them. Krabi is also relatively secured as compared to Bangkok or Phuket. You do not constantly have to live in terror of pickpockets or have nightmares about your five-year-old child getting lost in crowds just because you were too preoccupied to keep an eye on him. So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags, and disappear before the Siberian cold waves set in!

By Jennifer Ashraf


What is the best way to treat the hangover?

* Drink lots of fluids....try Gatorade, or fruit juice mixed with water.
* Try hot water with honey and lemon juice.
* Eat something like toast or fruit.
* Take soluble aspirin, or Ibuprofen (Brufen) for a bad headache, but always after some food. These tend to be better than paracetamol.
* Sleep as much as you can.
* Don't try and "sweat it out" by exercising.....you'll just dehydrate even more.
* Ask your doctor for something for the nausea if it is very bad.
* If really acidic in the stomach, try some antacid.





'Tis the season to be jolly'

Overloaded parking lots, big sales in Department stores where hiked up prices are lowered slightly to make you think you got a great deal, groups of Christmas carol singers here and there singing inspirational holiday songs, and slow traffic. You know it's that time of the year again, so be prepared to get into the holiday mode, as it's the season to be jolly, and what kind of a cruel hearted Grinch are you if you are not bright eyed and bushy tailed this time of the year? Under DC's red sky reflecting jingling golden bells and Christmas lights we slip on our cheery smiles with discounted presents and roasted chestnuts. Life seems slower, fuller, subtle excitement rises as the end of the year creeps up through hubbub of celebrations.

This year Christmas came to USA with a high terrorist alert, Mad Cow disease and the capture of Saddam Hussein, and a slight promise of a better economy. It came with the popularity of online shopping, decorated retail stores waiting eagerly for their customers who are busy ordering gifts online to avoid the busy malls. It came with a few Christmas comedies in the theater, and with rain, not snow.

Christmas came with re-runs of favorite TV series, the countdown of the top 40 music videos. As the biggest strategy of money making this Christmas, media started showing Reality TV shows on richest people in America. It started with rich father's daughters, showing the Hilfiger's, Hilton's and so forth. Theses shows concentrated on showing how much the rich kids/young adults are worth and what are they doing with the millions of dollars they have inherited. Paris and Nicky Hilton (Hilton's Granddaughters) are now common household names, teenage girls in America wanting to live the posh and trendy life like the millionaire sisters are encouraged to go out and buy look-alike clothing and jewelry. If she can't afford diamonds, then the average girl will settle on zirconia; if they can't afford Italian designers they will go with a no-name look alike up-to-the-minute wear. The bottom line is, there will be a sale, and profit will remain uprising. What a Strategy!

In this country the strategies of inspiring one to accomplish an emotion or a task is sometimes through reverse psychology. Such as the "Ozzy Osbourne Show." In the Christmas episodes of this show, Ozzy's wife constantly plans events and activity to get into the mood of Christmas while the ex drug addict rock star Ozzy puts Christmas down with his silly and dark remarks, after an hour of watching this show you are more in the frame of mind to enjoy Christmas than you were an hour before. Ozzy's comical and idiotic behavior brings out something merry and blissful in you, with which you can stuff a sock or bake cookies.

For the last few years our Eid fell within a month of Christmas and Jewish Hanukah. This obviously made the phrase "Happy Holidays" more politically correct and therefore we are hearing that phrase more than we normally do other years as there is no guilt of leaving out the Muslims in the spirit of celebration.

And what do we Bengalis do around this time of the year? Well it starts with a few Holiday parties, (for the last few years, "Christmas party" have been re-named to "Holiday Party" to be politically accurate). The companies we work for usually throw a big bash and we get dressed in simple but elegant black dresses and refresh our table manners eating baked potatoes and string beans. Sometimes we Bengalis have our own Christmas parties (some consider it a sign of keeping up with the drift and acting like the Romans when in Rome). So we also get our own little Christmas tree, our wrapped holiday gifts, and marinate a turkey in yogurt and Indian spices (the American way of cooking a turkey is often too bland for our pampered tongues), we also include an extra dish of Biriyani just in case the western dinner flops, then we feast away, as that's what we know to do best.

I cannot deny, either through peer pressure or a syndrome contagious, around this time there is a part of me that feels a bit more festive than rest of the year. I do not know which factor of Christmas makes me feel jovial. Maybe it's having an extra day off, or seeing homeless people being fed a full stomach's worth, or perhaps it's just the fact that a year is ending, and we have made some small or large history as we go on living for next year, to the next Eid, Hanukkah and Christma.

By Iffat Newaz



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