Nov 23, 2009

Power of estimation

Its a knack, I tell you. Estimation, that is! Or, maybe its there somewhere in your chromosomes. Cos I never seem to be getting it right. Try as I might, this estimation thing gives me a slip almost always.
I remember this game in one of the stalls in the school fairs (which were quite common in Delhi, in 80s). Guess the weight of a cake kept there right and, you win some good gift. Did I ever try it? No way. For one thing, I never went near the weights except to weigh myself. And two, I had full faith on my guessing power. I knew I would be way too ahead or way too back.
There was a time, not so long ago, when I used to shop for my kids clothes. My shopping spree generally took over on my way back home from the office since there was no time or patience to load the kids into the car and go back to shop. And Sunday shopping is something I hate from the bottom of my heart. I hate the rush, the search for free parking space, the madness at billing, the wait at trial rooms and so on and so forth. Sunday shopping is just not for me!
Oh I, where was I? Yes, so I used to shop for my kids and invariably ended up buying a size smaller for them. And almost always, I had to revisit the shop to exchange. I kept blaming this on my motherliness, which refuses to accept that my child is growing.
But then this same thing happens when I cook. My mother in law is a bit stingy when it comes to cooking. She believes that cooking in small quantities makes for a better taste. Maybe she is right, I will not deny it since she IS a good cook. But it is also a fact that many a times; she has underestimated and cooked less; ultimately having people waiting for food literally. During my early days of marriage, this used to get on my nerves and put both of us in many an embarrassing situation. This has instilled a sense of fear in me that I always need to be prepared with more than required. That I should not have guests and end up with less food. And so, I always keep a buffer when I cook, but which sometimes leads to too-much. And then this too-much-food gets carried forward for days. At this point in time, I must prostrate on the ground in gratitude to the person who invented Refrigerator. If you ask me there is no better invention than this! I wonder how they prevented food from getting spoilt in earlier days. Oops, I meander again.

I have a friend who loves to cook and invites us quite often. Every time I go to her place and take a peek at what she has cooked, I immediately get worried, if it would be enough. But voila, we all finish and there is still some left over. I really wonder how she does that.

I have problems even getting the recipes right. In the recipe, when it is mentioned 3 whistles, and I let the cooker blow out 3 whistles, invariably, the rice is undercooked; and in fear when I wait for 5 whistles, the rice becomes pudding!

So, this post was the outcome of the too-much-sevai I cooked today morning; half of which lies in my sweet refri. My hubby had a nice time teasing me about my ability to judge the required quantity till I reminded him that he is the one who is going to eat the extra tonight. That sent him brooding.

But there is one are where over estimation actually helps. In office! I always bargain for the maximum time for any project and end up finishing much before time. So, I guess it is not all that bad.

And yet it is never too late. I need tips and tricks. How do I judge the how much part? 


On the book front, I just finished The Time Travellers Wife by Audrey Niffenegger, and I have been eating my words back. I had half thought of dumping the book after reading first few pages. I kept arguing with Smita on how this book could have made to the top bestseller. I thankfully, continued reading, and here I am in love with the book. The recent book to have moved me this much was The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini. Simply awesome!


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