Packaging pollution: Taco Bell, can you reduce the burden on Mandur?

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Food overloaded with fat can be a put-off especially when all you want is a bowl of salad and a bigger bowl of soup on a rainy afternoon. With those very few relatively healthier eating options shutting shops one after another in Mantri Mall, I had no other go but to drag my friend to Taco Bell for a fill yesterday. Continue reading

GOING ORGANIC-7: Large-scale effort, large-scale failure as vermicompost experiment #1 goes haywire

Pic source: ca.safestb2b.com

Pic: ca.safestb2b.com

Any experiment diligently executed can fail due to some silliest of the mistakes, mid-way.

Soaring mid-April temperatures called for frequent watering to ensure proper moisture levels in the bed. The roof laid with plastic sheets was emitting a lot of heat inside the compost room. As advised by the expert, we sprinkled a few buckets of extra water on the bed, shut it with the lids. Continue reading

Pains of parenting amidst Vibgyor School rape incident & the like

Pic source: TOI

Pic source: TOI

So, it began all over again this morning. A “how to keep yourself safe from marauding rapists” session with my little girl.

I cannot define what the crime is in the four-letter word, no definitive answer to “why are you telling me this?” one-liners, can’t answer all her “whys?” each time I hold a ‘good touch and bad touch’ session, and cannot suppress the gut-wrenching pain when she starts giggling each time I tell her where strangers are not supposed to touch her. Continue reading

GOING ORGANIC-6: Low-cost infrastructure needed for large-scale vermicomposting

Adults and children in our apartment on a worm-sprinkling spree...

Adults and children in our apartment on a worm-sprinkling spree…

Building cement tanks for vermicomposting involves no rocket science. With some common sense, you can have them built with a local mason at a low cost. Involving an architect means two things: the cost goes up 3-4 times and they may come up with suggestions without having the basic knowledge about vermicompost. Continue reading

GOING ORGANIC-5: Choosing the right composting method for your community

Housekeepers sieving the compost prepared from kitchen waste.

Housekeepers sieving the compost prepared from kitchen waste.

There’s reams of data on the internet on various composting methods written quite beautifully by green enthusiasts worldwide. However, after wading my way through this maze of information and sending distress calls and emails to local compost experts, this is where it stands: It’s all theory until you do it yourself. The reason: Case studies offering crucial information on how to go about it at a community level, particularly in India, which can help you evolve contextually were few and far between. Continue reading

GOING ORGANIC-4: Just compost it, dammit!

A series of articles based on my personal experience of turning our manicured garden, used to synthetic fertilisers and pesticides, into completely organic with the help of like-minded enthusiastic volunteers.

Kitchen waste composting in progress.

Kitchen waste composting in progress.

Isn’t everything that rots beautiful?

If this thought makes you cringe, then that’s probably the first hurdle you need to cross. Because when it comes to composting, there is more to unlearn than to learn. Continue reading