Sometimes life gives you lemons. Sometimes it sends a mosquito your way that gives you dengue.
It’s that time of the year folks – lets be a part of a city wide epidemic… you know, no FOMO that way.
For the uninitiated, Delhi is currently in the grip of dengue fever. It’s a terrible virus transmitted by mosquitoes which will steadily knock down your platelet count and leave you feeling drained. And did I tell you, there’s no medicine for it. No dava, only dua.
How to make a bad situation worse
Sometimes life takes those lemons and shoves it up your precariously balanced posterior, because you know, it can. And that is just what happened on Day 3 of dengue.
It came in the form of one white hair. That one strand of the absolute truth, staring at me in the mirror. Its telling me, I am growing old.
What’s the fuss you ask? Plenty of twenty something women are dealing with premature greys.
But here’s my issue. I have a pact with the universe, to turn on the greys when I hit 30. Nothing set in stone (clearly, I should’ve got it put on stamp paper) but I want my money back.
See, here’s how the situation was supposed to play out – I look at my first grey, then I think about all the millions I’ve made, the fancy car am driving, the hot/beach-property owning Italian I am doing (don’t judge me, you want it too!) I would simply sigh, and say “Meh..its just grey hair.”
Cut to the moment you’re forced to evaluate you’re life. Prematurely, like that grey strand.
Here’s the back of my baseball card – I made a quarter million, then blew it up on doughnuts. I have a friend who drives my dream car. And yes, I am doing a very hot Italian guy, every night in my dreams.
Lets deal with the situation
Understandably, panic sets in faster than eggs in a hot custard. Absolute terror.
Breathe. One more time. Now, see this image.
Ok, lets fix this.
Step 1: Take a parent’s opinion
See they’ve been dealing with it for donkey’s years. They’re wiser and smarter – they’ll know just what to say.
Dads will be sympathetic and will greatly help in calming you down.
Mums may stare at it for a while and say “am not ready for your white hair.” You’ll know where the denial in your genes comes from.
But mostly, you’re folks will help you come to terms with it, speak to them.
Step 2: Check for deficiencies
Chance are its genetic or a result of a stressful lifestyle. But it could also be a sign of a deficiency. It could be lack of B12 or an indication of a thyroid problem. Check with your doctor, cause let’s face it – you’re not getting any younger.
Step 3: Chill on the artificial products
Please don’t go on an over-the-counter product buying spree. Artificial colouring will damage your hair further. As will products that have silicon, sodium, sulphate and a million other chemicals.
Instead, call your grandmother and take some home remedial advise using natural compounds found around you. Or google it. Either way, make a promise to include natural treatments like oiling into your weekly regimen. You’re hair will thank you.
Never thought you’d get hair advise on a travel & food blog, eh?
Step 4: Embrace the grey(s)
Ok, lets face it. A tiny part of you agrees with the George Clooney look. It makes you look smarter, your clients will sit up and listen, you won’t be asked for ID at the entrance of a bar. And you can now totally rock those nerdy glasses. Its time take shameless advantage of looking worldly-wise.
Step 5: Have dessert
If you’re still panicking, the prognosis is clear – you need dessert. Hot, gooey and blissfully reassuring that the world still exists as you imagine it. And that one hair will not develop into a head of grey. Oh, god forbid.
Step 6: Do step 5 first
Dessert for the young at heart, but otherwise aging
Enter Hot Chocolate Pudding. Or Chocolate Pots de Creme. Better still, lets call it Grievance Pudding.
The kind that takes no time to make. Or to cool.
The kind that you devour over the kitchen slab with giant spoons along with your mother.
Cause you can take it no more. You need to be instantly gratified.
Tasting notes: Is it a mousse? Is it a custard? Is it a plane? Is it an orgasm? I’ll let you decide.
– The absolute best bitter chocolate you can find : 200 grams, chopped
– Full Cream : 1 cup
– Milk : 1 cup
– Sugar: 2-3 tbsp (or you can omit it entirely if you’d like to keep it bitter)
– Instant Coffee : 1 tbsp or your favourite alcohol – Rum/ Whisky : 4-5 tbsp of alcohol. Heck, pour in the bottle
– A pinch of salt
– Egg yolks : 6
– Vanilla Extract : 1 tsp
– Preheat the oven to 175 degrees Celsius.
– Butter 6 ramekins. Or get creative and use your mother’s white china tea cups.
– In a saucepan, heat the cream, milk, sugar, coffee/alcohol and salt. Heat this mixture till tiny bubbles appear and then turn off the gas.
– Pour this mix into the chocolate and let it sit for a few minutes. Whisk to dissolve the remaining chocolate.
– Whisk together the egg yolks and vanilla.
– Once the chocolate mix has cooled and is tepid, mix about 3 spoons into the yolks to lighten the mixture. This will ensure that the eggs don’t scramble with the heat of the chocolate.
– Then gradually add the yolks into the chocolate mixture.
– Return the custard to medium heat and whisk till it thickens a little – about 5-7 minutes.
– Place the tea cups or ramekins in a roasting pan. Divide the custard into the moulds.
– Add hot water into the roasting pan till it reaches about halfway up the sides of the mould. Cover the pan with foil.
– Bake in the preheated oven till the sides of the custard is set and the centre is jiggly, about 35 minutes.
– Once cooked, transfer the custards on the cooling wire.
Wait for it to cool enough to eat (it tastes even better the next day, if you can wait) Enjoy with whipped cream or ice cream.
And for now, lets be grateful for your remaining black hair.
(All Images by Ishita Thakur)