Home   |  Issues  |  The Daily Star Home | Volume 5 Issue 17, Tuesday, April 27, 2010



News flash

Authentic Mexican at The Westin Dhaka

WITH chef extraordinaire Guillermo Martinez and Diego Ayala, flown in from Gran Melia Resort, Cancún, Mexico, The Westin Dhaka lays elaborate plans to present Mexican food with all its rich gustatory traditions that would surely appeal to the Dhaka palate, seasoned for food pitched with a sprinkle of spice and flamed with hot pepper.

The food promotion that begun on 2 May 2010 will continue till 23 May. The two guest chefs will be cooking live throughout the food festival and will present various Mexican authentic foods such as Tortilla soup, Cactus Salad, Beef Pozole, Guacamole and Mexican Salsa with Tortilla Chips, among many others.

“Along with this unique taste, Mexican food will certainly offer a memorable dinner experience to everyone. We are very excited to introduce 'Mexican Food Promotion' in Dhaka and also grateful to our partners, Etihad Airways, who have made this festival happen," said Atique Rahman, General Manager of The Westin Dhaka, during his speech in the press conference.

The Mexican Food Festival at the Westin is a promotional dinner. For details on reservation, contact The Westin Dhaka, Gulshan Avenue. # 01712962891 www.westin.com/dhaka

AS a young girl I looked up to two cousins of mine as idols. One was Zeenat Rasheed and the other, Nasrine R Karim.

Zeenat appi was a life-sized figure from my childhood days but Nasrine apa came into my life much later. Since she lived abroad with her parents, I don't remember much about her during my childhood. My earliest memory of her was during my chhoto chacha, Late Jahanzeb Rasheed's wedding. I met this beautiful, young lady with long, straight, brown hair and fell in love with her instantly. Later, of course, she told me that her hair was coloured! This knowledge was a novelty for a little child with no fashion sense. And it was a matter of great consternation for dadi who thought Nasrine apa needed a good oil massage to make her hair black and shiny!

She designed the outfit our grandmother gave me to wear for the wedding. It consisted of a sky-blue brocade, high collared, sleeveless tunic and plain, blue, silk bell-bottom pants the rage of those days. It was, no doubt, my first extravagant, designer outfit and I loved it to bits.

The next time I saw her was on my tenth birthday. She came a few days before and got me a funky, silver necklace. Since I had no sisters and my mother never wore jewellery, this neckpiece was my first real piece of trinket (not counting the innumerable, ugly, tiny gold rings we used to be gifted in those days).

I cherished it for many years. She also got my father to buy me a “go-go” watch...a big-faced, square watch with large roman numbers mounted on a black, suede strap. I had no idea that people wore these fashionable things. She opened the door to my imaginative mind and taught me that it's hip to be trendy.

I admired my two elder sisters, Zeenat appi and Nasrine apa immensely. I noticed everything about both of them from top to toe. But since I was closer to Zeenat appi, Nasrine apa remained an enigma to me. Her dresses, shoes, bags, jewellery, makeup, the way she smiled, the way she talked, the way she carried herself...everything about her made me want to be like her.

Many years flew in between and I lost touch with the hero of my kiddie days. Then we resumed contact again. Whenever she came to Sylhet, she called me up. She was the first to text me a greeting, be it Eid or New Year or Pohela Boishakh. She constantly sent me duas, which I still have saved in my cell phone. She rang me up if she wanted something done in Sylhet.

Then all of a sudden on 10 April, I heard that she had only two months to live. It was such a shocking news. These things happened to other people; not to someone in one's own family. I prayed for her hoping the doctors would be proven wrong.

On the first day of Boishakh, while people were rejoicing, I had this empty feeling in the core of my being. When I received the news of Nasrine apa's death from my cousin, Ayesha; I felt totally numb.

She didn't even last a week, let alone a couple of months. A dynamic lady had passed away...far away from the pain and the strife she was going through. May Allah grant her a place in Jannat. Ameen.



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