pithas and winter mornings
has approached on tiptoe, crisp and fog laden, but that hardly puts
a damper on the Bengali spirit, for it is time yet again, to indulge
our taste buds and take a delicious bite out of the Pitha.
This delicacy is
a favourite of many, of both the poor and the wealthy. Sumptuous smells
fill the early morning air as wayside vendors both men and women make
Chitoi and Bhapa Pithas on small clay ovens on the street sides, while
homemakers hold Rosh and Pitha parties at their homes.
The festive mood,
somewhat faded after Eid, is rekindled for those who choose to make
the arrival of this Bengali delicacy an occasion in itself. There is
an array of different kinds of Pithas at your fingertips, besides the
popular Bhapa (small cakes made of grounded rice grain,) like all other
Pithas; it is soft in texture and filled with molasses) and Chitoi.
Not all pithas are necessarily sweet. Plain Chitoi for example can be
savoured with a bit of shorshe bataa (mustard paste), meat or even pickles.
There is also Dudh Chitoi, or Chitoi soaked in a mixture of milk, molasses
and coconut shavings.
Shapta is another treat, stuffed with khirsha, a creamy filling made
out of milk and sugar. Then there is Puli, which are crescent shaped
dumplings stuffed with coconut and molasses, and Dudh Puli, the same
dumplings soaked in thick, sweetened milk. Semai Pitha is thick, elongated
strands of rice dough soaked in a thick, creamy custard-like mixture.)
If you want to sink your teeth into something hard and crunchy, try
the Nakshi Pitha, which has a light, sweet flavour. These come in interesting
snowflake-like shapes, and are intricately designed in the middle with
palm tree thorns. Nakshi Pithas are fried on heated molasses syrup.
Poa Pitha, like
the Nakshi Pitha has a light, sweet flavour. It is fried, and has a
reddish tinge. There are regional pithas such as the Mera from Comilla,
and the Bibikhana Pitha, which is a specialty of Bikrompur.
If you don't know
how to make Pitha yourselves you can always purchase from Pitha Ghor
(32 Bangabandhu Avenue, Dhaka 1000). The shop offers almost all of these
treats, and others can be ordered such as the regional pithas, so wait
no longer. Indulge in a delicious slice of pitha!
Like it or not, winter has arrived a little early this year. This means
that you're going to have to start pampering your skin with a little
extra attention. If you fail to do so, you'll be marring your radiant
looks, and eventually end up looking like a person living the final
years of his/her life. Taking extra care of your skin doesn't involve
much hassle really, and so you need not fret. Simply applying a little
moisturising lotion will ensure that you'll hold onto your beloved youth.
Moisturising lotion is available at nearly all supermarkets in Dhaka.
Depending on brand and whether it's local or foreign, the price of moisturising
lotion ranges between Tk 80 to Tk 500.
Winter doesn't mean that you'll have to be unfashionable. Even while
being wrapped up, you can give strong fashion statements. A shawl is
one piece of clothing that will enable you to do exactly that. By wearing
a well-designed shawl, you'll be protected from the chill of winter
and at the same time men will admire your taste of fashion. For purchasing
shawls, we suggest you that you go to New Market. Prices at New Market
will depend on your ability to bargain. However, for a rough guide we
can tell you that the prices will range from Tk 400 to Tk 5000. If you
happen to live in Uttara, you can check out Family Needs (Sector # 3).
They've got a fairly decent collection of shawls, and they're priced
between Tk 600 to Tk 3000.
Food tastes good, but if you don't do regular exercise you'll end up
with a 'bhuri'. From this writer's personal experience we can tell you
that women generally don't like men with 'bhuris'. Likewise, women with
'bhuris' aren't a very tempting prospect for men either. In order to
ensure that you don't get a 'bhuri' and manage to stay fit and healthy,
purchase a skipping rope and carry out regular exercise with it. At
Shaheen Sports (Hockey Stadium) you'll be able to buy a skipping rope
within Tk 200.
If you swim regularly or are planning to do so, you might want to consider
purchasing goggles. This is because by using goggles you'll be able
to protect your eyes from the chlorine that swimming pools contain,
and consequently forget about returning home with "red eyes."
Goggles can be purchased for Tk 400 at Shaheen Sports (Hockey Stadium).
Now that we've told you how to solve your problem of getting "red
eyes", hopefully one of you will concentrate on your swimming and
become as good a swimmer as Australia's Ian Thorpe.
Nearly all of the 50 or so private universities in Bangladesh offer
BBA degrees. With so many business graduates coming out each year from
these private universities, the competition for jobs is intense. Is
there anything you can do to give yourself a little competitive edge?
Well, yes there is. By regularly reading business magazines you'll be
able to be aware about the developments in the business world and also
be able to see how your theoretical knowledge is applied in the real
world. One business magazine that we strongly recommend is The Economist.
It is available at all quality bookstores, and is sold for Tk 150.
Some say that they hate the violin because they feel it's a musical
instrument that cries. There are also some who find the music produced
by a violin to be absolutely enchanting. In case you are somebody who
shares the thoughts of the latter group of people, you might want to
purchase a violin in order to try out your own talent at the instrument.
At Surniketan (28/B Dhanmandi, Road # 1) you'll be able to purchase
a violin between Tk 2600 to Tk 3500.
Sayeed Mahmud Nizam
Human conflict goes as far back as Cain and Abel, and will probably
last as long as there are two people left to argue with one another.
Arguments are what can either add spice to a relationship, or poison
it. They can either help iron out any problems between two people,
or they can add to them by bringing an element of hostility into the
equation. So how can two people resolve their outstanding issues without
walking out of the encounter feeling bitter and hurt? There are some
simple conflict management strategies, which, if followed, can really
make a difference.
You've probably noticed how a steamroller crunches over the tar and
asphalt on a road, crunching down anything in its wake. There are
some people who actually behave like that in a conversation, just
going on and on with his/her own argument, without giving the other
person a chance to speak, or listening to the arguments of the other
person. This is called 'steam-rolling', and not only does it not solve
anything, it results in making the recipient even more angry at the
steam roller. When you find yourself in an argument, try taking turns
at speaking. Give the other person a chance to speak, and when s/he
does, listen. Try to see it from the other perspective. It'll help
you reach a mutual beneficial arrangement.
on the present
Don't you hate getting a recap of all your past misdeeds, followed
by a future projection, whenever you fight with someone? When you
store a lot of grievances in your emotional gunny-sack and open the
floodgates during one single fight, the person on the receiving end
will at best listen to five minutes of your nagging, and then tune
you out. Which leaves you with a hoarse throat and an issue unsolved.
So if you want to get maximum mileage out of a fight, focus on the
'now', and leave the 'yesterday' and 'tomorrow' where they belong…out
of your conversation.
silence turns sour
The Silent Treatment is a weapon we've all used at some point or other
in our lives, and it's very effective too, at least in the short run.
If you're looking at the long run, giving someone the cold shoulder
every time you fall out with that person isn't going to solve anything.
If an issue needs to be addressed, it's much better to sit down and
discuss it calmly and logically, without using emotional blackmail.
of the belt-line
Nothing sours up an argument quicker than personal attacks aimed at
the opponent's self-esteem. If the conflict is supposed to be constructive,
then stick to the deed, and not the doer, and you'll make more headway.
only human, and it's easy to get carried away in a fight. However,
by being just a little rational, and just a little considerate, we
can make the fights work for us, instead of giving the aspirin-makers
Sabrina F Ahmad