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Whisky Lady – November novelties

My Whisky Lady posts kept speed with lots of activities in November despite being away in Indonesia most of the month with a short detour to Singapore for Whisky Live.


Before flying off, managed to sneak in a session with the Bombay & Malt and Cigar gentlemen which was a quest for quality affordable cask strength whiskies:

Our original tasting group carried on to sample an interesting assortment of Teeling whiskies – which I also tried at Whisky Live in Singapore… so didn’t feel completely left out!

Old Pulteney, Benromach, Bowmore, Hampden

Old Pulteney, Benromach, Bowmore, Hampden

The Whisky Ladies kindly waited for my return to Mumbai so we could enjoy a trio of ‘contributors choice’ whiskies plus an experiment comparing Glencairn and Norlan tasting glasses featuring:

  • Old Pultney 21 year 46%What a treat and a perfect start to the evening!
  • Benromach 10 year 100′ proof 57% Subtle smoke combined with light sherry spice – yum!
  • Bowmore Blackrock NAS 40%A peatier bolder whisky…
  • And a special treat from my Whisky Live Singapore adventures – Hampden 2010 Jamaican Pure Single Rum HLCF, 6 year 68.5%

(Tasting notes coming in December)

Nordic Whisky Set

My Nordic Whiskies – Explorers Edition continued its journey with:

I also shared a few additional musing such as:

Westland, Pine Barrels, Stranahan's, Four Roses, Woodford

Westland, Pine Barrens, Stranahan’s, AD Laws, Woodford

And published the previous Whisky Ladies tasting notes from our American adventures:

Curious to know more? Check out recent Whisky Lady’s monthly missives:

You can also find my Whisky Lady in India avatar on:

Music Musings – Emel Mathlouthi

Emel Mathlouthi performed at Mehboob Studios as part of the first Johnnie Walker – The Journey festival – and part of reviving my old Music Musings series!

Emel seduced the audience with the powerful emotions her voice emitted… punching through with passion, protest, shifting from lilting to wrenchingly raw.

After the show, Emel shared how much she enjoyed their short stay in India. Yet after extensive touring also appreciated a chance to relax in the hotel, swim outdoors…

She shared that they had been to Vancouver and Montreal and enjoyed their Canadian tour. I later met the guitar player who talked about being busy working on their new CD, soon to be independently released – Ensen.

Emil Mathlouthi – Ma Lkit

Want more? Check out:

I’ll admit I’d never heard of her before the event… and yet for much of December, Christmassy music was replaced by the haunting sounds of Tunisia.

Related articles

Whisky Lady – October offerings…

Happy Diwali and Hallowe’en everyone!!!

As the lights glow, firecrackers pop and people get dressed up in silly costumes, time for my monthly Whisky Lady round up! Even being away in Jakarta for a good part of September and early October did not deter sampling adventures….

Nor an opportunity to share an extract of an interview with Inver House (AnCnoc, Balblair, Old Pulteney, Speyburn, Hanky Bannister, Caorunn) Master Distiller Stuart Harvey on whether “Single Malt drinkers are promiscuous.


All three Mumbai tasting groups packed their sessions into less than a week:

*Tasting notes to follow next month


There was also an opportunity to explore Miniatures

These sessions were augmented by a few more sampling experiencings:

From the archives, I unearthed:

Togouchi, Nikka, Yoichi, Kavalan

You can also find a few more pages:

Finally, last but not least, my travels included an opportunity to explore whisky haunts in Jakarta, Indonesia… you may hear more on that post project.

Come join me in the continued whisky and other adventures!

Curious to know more? Check out recent Whisky Lady’s monthly missives:

You can also find my Whisky Lady in India avatar on:

Saying farewell too soon…

Saying farewell is never easy. And when it is too soon, even more so.


We said farewell to a friend. We celebrated his life. We remembered first moments, great moments, mad moments and more. We were reminded how life takes us on many journeys with twists and turns.

Farewell my friend, may your journey continue…



Spinach head + pissing milk

A sometimes amusing thing about having a smattering of more than one language is how what you hear pops something completely different into your head courtesy of another language!

It can result in some rather odd brain combinations…

The 1st time I was asked if I wanted ‘susu’ in my coffee in Indonesia… had a quite gross image of a kid pissing into my sacred morning ritual with a heavily caffeinated brew!

Cus ‘susu‘ in my Hindi-colonised brain now means… well… taking an erm…. leak.

Whereas in Bahasa it means milk!

Last trip to Jakarta during my stay-cation massage, I thought the girl asked if I wanted a palak massage too.

Now palak to me means spinach…. So I instantly had bizarre cartoon images of spinach dancing in my head!

Turns out she was actually saying kepala i.e. head but obvious my ear was wired to food!

I wonder if others have this strange experience of hearing (or mis-hearing) one thing which bears zero relationship to what is ACTUALLY being said?

BTW… if you haven’t yet checked out Simone (Lady of the Cakes) new blog on Multilingual by Choice yet, do….

Related posts:

Zoe Moonlit Zapa’s 1st Birthday

So we don’t actually know when Zoe’s first birthday really is. The vet’s estimate post rescue was likely October…. sometime…

Me?? I would NEVER get into trouble!

Baby Zoe…

See our precious little princess was a stray. Initially brought home by one person, then adopted by another before prancing and pouncing into our home as a gangly pre-teen on Boxing Day aka 26 Dec 2015.

We adore her to bits… and there is little doubt when she comes to curl up for a cuddle, Zoe kinda likes us too.

What we've dubbed the Zoe "look"

Dubbed the Zoe “look”

We survived her escape artist phase, lived through her hilarious heat stage, and her drugged out recovery from a little operation to ensure there would be no baby Zoes.

We’ve weened her off her whisky and beer habit. Don’t ask.

We’ve come to accept that paper bags and cardboard boxes will be destroyed.

Did you want this box?

Did you want this box? (see… the ‘look’)

We even forgave the water mishap that led to the demise of my much beloved Macbook Air. Oh that was an expensive frustrating accident that derailed many things!

In turn, she lives with being picked up and being put in front of her scratching post when attempting to shred the ironing board or chair.

She does her daily duty gently tapping her lazy humans to get up in the morning. No alarms required, no siree! Not on Zoe’s watch!

She puts up with our occasional absences where another human pops over to say hello, dump a little food and leave… or seems to quite like her ‘cat sitter’ companion because she plays with her!

And gives her ‘fan club’ of various delivery men the gift of her haughty door greetings… or occasionally climbing up the door railing to their astonished eyes at her acrobatics (show off!).

Like most felines, she enjoys watching her world from ‘on high’ and decided a basket with spare clean kitchen cloths on top of the fridge would be her throne. She particularly enjoys avidly watching play rehearsals from her perch.

Watching on high

“Try that line again…”

She has no interest in people food, so a crazy thing like a birthday cake is nonsense.

However today we say thanks for our little fur ball. We share a home and daily routines. She’s our little munchkin. We are her pet humans. It works.

Related posts:

Whisky Lady – Speedy September

My Whisky Lady posts kept speed with lots of activities in September… including celebrating the 300th post!

The month was supposed to welcome the return of all three tasting groups… However my Jakarta trip derailed our Bombay Malt & Cigar night… oops!


The Whisky Ladies of Mumbai enjoyed a delightful trio of contrasting whiskies:


Our original tasting group returned after a two-month hiatus to explore:

Nordic Whisky Set

Our Nordic Whiskies – Explorers Edition began its journey with:

  1. Sweden’s Smögen Single Cask 7/2011 4 year 57.3% – Superb and left us wanting more!
  2. Sweden’s Smögen Sherry Project 1:4 57.2% – An interesting experiment with Sherry…
  3. Sweden’s Box Whisky The Festival 2015 54.5% –
  4. Sweden’s Box Whisky Shareholders 2016, 3 year 52% – Privelege to partake

Which prompted publishing a new European whiskies page…


These lovelies were followed by tasting notes from another miniatures session featuring:

Plus I shared insight behind how we organize our tasting groups – “Whisky clubs revealed!” And a wee prattle on “Whisky nosing…” plus a revisit of a yummy Paul John Single Cask Peated.

Whisky Ladies 1st Anniversary - Padmini

With all my travel and work focus in the next couple of months, behind the scenes had a flurry of advance informal tastings with more miniatures plus made a dent into the Canadian collection. Notes on these experiences will hopefully keep Whisky Lady moderately active!

Curious to know more? Check out recent Whisky Lady’s monthly missives:

You can also find my Whisky Lady in India avatar on:

“Please take pictures during our show” in Mumbai

Normally when you see a play, there are stern reminders to “Turn your phone off!”

Ignore at your peril. That annoying @$$hole who thinks he’s more important than everyone else not only leaves his phone ringer on… but even answers a call while others shoot visual daggers at the perpetrator.

And photos? Often also a strict ‘no no’ with ushers rushing to admonish stealth photographers from the audience.

However the approach at a recent musical on the life of Gandhi went against such warnings.

Instead their stance was “We welcome your taking pictures… just as a courtesy to the actors and audience, please no flash and keep your phone on silent.”

Transforming the taboo into a viral marketing campaign.

2016-08-20 Gandhi

Now, while my photos may be crap, I did indeed snap a few… hence this one makes it into this week’s Sunday Snaps!

What do you think about taking photographs or videos of live performances? Artist infringement or an optimal way to advertise?

Related ‘Sunday Snaps’ posts:

3rd year + 13th Quarter – Belated update

After a bit of a hiatus, time to bring back a quarterly summary of what’s been happening.

In real life, there have been a few fairly momentus changes in the last few months. Most are ones I don’t tend to talk about. Bottom line is I had to leave India to change my visa… thankfully was successful!

There were many hopeful moments of a return to Indonesia or Malaysia or other opportunities that have finally materialized with a project in Jakarta starting later this month!

I also had my first article published on Scroll.in :

A foreign woman’s response to Mahesh Sharma: It’s got nothing to do with dressing modestly

Featured Image -- 12787

Gimli Manitoba harbour sunset

While there wasn’t much travel, there were a couple of trips:

  • April was back to Delhi to finally finalize my divorce
  • June brought a jaunt to London, Toronto and Winnipeg with a new Indian visa quest
  • My Winnipeg time included joining a 50th wedding anniversary, friend’s 60th birthday and side-trip to Gimli, Manitoba where we even had a tour of the Crown Royal distillery!
  • August had a terrific week-long marriage marathon in Singapore

2016-04-18 Delhi Fashion Mural

Top views for the year?

  1. Obsessions… playing with piano keys about my partner transforming old piano keys into art
  2. Fringes of fame aka star selfie ‘autograph’ featuring flirting with fame!
  3. India Memory Project – Partner’s Story… just read it… a very sweet story
  4. Irrational moments – Innocent question triggering an emotional minefield
  5. When did it become rude to call? Musings on no longer just picking up the phone to call… with some terrific comments


What’s in store this quarter? Hopefully work, work and more work!

  • Fingers crossed nothing derails the newly signed international project in Jakarta!! I can’t wait to get back there…
  • Even bigger hope that after massive efforts, can finally start to harvest some  crops from all the seeds planted, weeded and watered over the last year for enterprise solution contracts
  • There are a few other bits and bobs that may also lead to something interesting…

Related posts:

Sunday solo salmon in Mumbai

Just after I booked my flight and stay for Jakarta, my attention turned to what needs to get done around the house before I take off for 3 weeks…

Did a little fridge digging and freezer check, discovering a frozen Atlantic salmon fillet just begging to be consumed with some assorted veggies….

My partner was on tour so it was just me, but one of the things about work travel is you learn to revel in the occasional ‘proper’ solo dinner…

So why not get into practice at home?

There you have it… found myself cooking up a storm to produce a scrumptious yet reasonably healthy Sunday dinner just for me, myself and I!

  • Poached salmon with a crazy yum citrus dill reduction sauce
  • Steamed cauliflower with a dash of tumeric
  • Toasted roasted beans with sesame, sunflower, yellow mustard and cumin seeds
  • Carrots with cumin and dill
  • Potatoes sautéed with onions a special home-made olive oil my partner picked up in Beirut, cracked black pepper and seasalt

What a pleasure… a good proper home cooked meal, at our own table, with a little music in the background. Yup… think I have my ‘home fix’ and easing beautifully into solo meals!


Related posts:


Carissa Hickling

Carissa Hickling

Originally from Winnipeg, Canada, has called India home since 2003, working in Asia Pacific and traveling all over! She's also a bit of a 'Whisky Lady' too!

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