“Anuradha, Anuradha… “ calls a voice gently…
…barely making a dent in my consciousness…
“Anuradha… ” more insistent and a hand shakes my shoulder…
I shake myself and open my eyes, looking around bemusedly like an owl. This doesn’t look like my bedroom… and what are all these people doing here anyway?
“I think it would be a good idea if you went back to your room and went to bed,” suggests the gentle voice again.
Nothing loth, I quickly gather up my belongings – my bag, pen, book etc. and trail blearily out of the door. Oops, I was forgetting something important. I go back in, excuse myself and bending down, pick up a rather large watermelon from where I had stashed it under my chair and bearing it aloft triumphantly, walk out of the… classroom!
In my defence, it is ten o’clock in the night and wa…ay past my bedtime! The setting is at my alma mater, the year is 1986. The prof in question – a marketing whiz kid – is here from the US, taking a course for us. He is young and he is sort of… anything but hidebound! He has decided that it it would be a good idea to take a class at ten in the night for some unfathomable reason. As for me, born to parents who start yawning any time past seven in the evening and toodle off to bed promptly at nine, ten seems positively decadent!
To add to all that, I have been out with another classmate doing a market survey and picked up a large watermelon on the way back, cradling it gingerly on my lap as I straddle the pillion seat! This is one of our “hallowed” traditions – any one who goes to the “city” has to pick up a watermelon. Post dinner, as we settle down to work on various projects, cutting and sharing the watermelon provides some much needed relief from the rigours of econometrics and project finance!
We get caught in a cold shower on the way back (anyone ever experienced the cold monsoon rains of Bangalore?!). We ride back slowly, making it safely past the few kilometres of paddy fields but with no time to go and change. Not to mention the watermelon. We can’t abandon it – people are depending on us! So, wet and shivering, we make our way to the classroom and stash the bounty under my chair.
The prof comes in, hands out a case study. It was all his fault, really. If it had been anything but a case study, involving careful reading of many pages of story and data, I would have been right there! The reading was all right, to begin with, at least. But at what point data and story and product and watermelon ran into each other, I have no idea! Well, there we are – back at the beginning again, with the prof – nice chap that he was, advising me to pack it in! I trail off to the hostel, change and have a nice nap before the rest of the class comes back, looking sleepy and absolutely ready for… a watermelon!
Today, of course, with greater access to ‘things’ than a hostel room, I would serve the watermelon in many diffferent ways!
Way 1 – VODKA -INFUSED WATERMELON
- 1 watermelon – 3 kg at least
- 1 funnel
- 2 – 3 glasses vodka – lay it on!
- 1 knife
Cut a hole in the watermelon the size of the funnel. The hole should extend into the melon at least 2″.
Carefully turning the knife around, remove the cylinder of watermelon that you have cut out.
Insert funnel into hole. Pour in enough vodka to almost fill the funnel.
As the funnel empties, fill again… and again… and again.
When you get a trifle impatient, pour yourself a drink!
Chill, cut and serve. Or if you are still in a hostel, slice in half, mush the watermelon about, distribute straws and sit around in a circle, sipping!
Way 2 : WATERMELON COCKTAIL
- 5 cups watermelon chunks – de-seeded and frozen
- Juice of 2 limes
- Sugar – 2 tsp (you may need more depending on the sourness of the lime)
- Tequila – 60 ml
- White rum – 60 ml
- Tabasco sauce – 1/2 tsp
- Ground white pepper – 1/4 tsp
Mint and crushed ice
Blend everything together in a mixer. Pour over crushed mint and ice in glasses and serve immediately.
Warning: These are quite lethal so go easy!
End result is snores anyway!
Pics: Courtesy internet