Category Archives: The Enthusiast

This category will have those posts other than food and travel.

How to start start the perfect campfire

A campfire is somewhat an integral part of any outdoor get-together or picnic or excursion but making one is not everyone’s cup of tea . Since I had to face this difficulty several times in the past , I decided to make a list of tips to make it easy for you .


You get guys around a campfire , and they start telling their stories . That’s the fellowship they want to be in . ~ John Eldredge

Requirements :
  1. Timber or wood or coal or charcoal ( whatever is your fuel of choice! ) .
  2. Few twigs and ample amount of dry leaves or wood shavings .
  3. 2 – 3 newspaper or large cartons .
  4. Any combustible liquid ( preferably kerosene ) .
  5. Rags ( torn clothes ).
  6. Matchbox or lighter .
 Procedure :

Choose an open space preferably away from trees or houses which is not very windy . Clear the nearby area of any other combustible item like clothes , plastic ,  paper etc . Make a neat pile of the leaves or wood shavings on top of a sheet of newspaper or a torn carton . Stack the twigs on top of that . Then arrange the wood like a hollow pyramid with the rest inside it .

Wet a piece of cloth in the combustible fluid and put it inside that pyramid (do not make it dripping wet ). Also sprinkle a little bit if the fluid on the wood . Light it with the matches or lighter with your body as far as possible from it (stretch you hand as far as you can) .

The fuel burns of quickly and light s up the leaves and twigs and heats up the wood which starts burning cause of the burning cloth and twigs . If it doesn’t burn in one go , put more newspaper and cartons and light it again . Fan it slowly with a torn carton and it will burn like magic . Coal and charcoal are harder to ignite to do not give them in the beginning itself , add it on top of the wood . And there you have your perfect campfire to sit around it and share tales .

Make sure to have a bucket of water handy in case of emergency . Once it is lit , make sure to either put the remaining combustible liquid in the fire itself or store it at a distance . It is always preferable to wear cotton clothes near any kind of fire . And be extra careful if you are consuming alcohol because it can catch fire !!!

Please make sure to pour water on the ashes after you are done .

Happy camping …



Stop eating pork because of Swine Flu ???

Swine flu looks like the latest in the long list of medical problems in India . With about 1700 deaths and 30,000 infections (source) , this looks like quite an epidemic out here . And with the amount of hue and cry to stop eating pork , people who love pork (me included) are left in a dilemma about what to eat and what not to.

Hence I decided to go through the Internet and gather facts about whether I should stop eating pork or can I continue with it . The following is based on my studies along with my references .

  What is Swine Flu ?

Swine flu / influenza is a respiratory disease of pigs caused by type A influenza viruses that regularly cause outbreaks of this influenza in pigs. Swine flu virus can cause high levels of illness in swine herds, but usually cause few deaths. Currently there are four main influenza type A virus subtypes that have been isolated in pigs namely “H1N1” , “H1N2” , “H3N2” , and “H3N1” . Most of the recently isolated influenza viruses from pigs being H1N1 viruses.Swine flu viruses may circulate among swine throughout the year, but most outbreaks occur during the  autumn and winter months similar to outbreaks of seasonal influenza in humans .

  Swine Flu and Human

Swine flu viruses do not normally infect humans but sporadic human infections with flu viruses that normally infect pigs have occurred before and when this happens, these viruses are called “variant viruses” . Commonly , human infections with variant viruses have occurred in people exposed to infected pigs (e.g. children near pigs at a fair or workers in the swine industry).

The H1N1 swine flu viruses are anatomically very different from human H1N1 viruses and, therefore, vaccines for human seasonal flu would not provide protection from H1N1 swine flu viruses.

  Symptoms of Swine Flu

The following are the most common symptoms of swine flu in humans

    • coughing
    • sore throat
    • running or stuffy nose
    • fever
    • fatigue
    • headache
    • body ache

  Tests for swine flu

To diagnose swine influenza A infection, a specimen from the respiratory tract would generally need to be collected within the first four to five days of illness (when an infected person is most likely to shed the virus). However children may shed virus for 10 days or longer.

This testing can be done in almost all government hospitals at a very low-cost . The medicines are also available in the same place.

  Who are at risk

Mostly those people who come in contact with pigs are at risk . But children and old people are also vulnerable due to their comparatively weak immune system . Others with a weak immune system like those with diabetes and AIDS patients and people on certain medications are also at risk.

The virus propagates mainly person-to-person transmission through coughing or sneezing of people infected with the influenza virus. Men may become infected by touching something with flu viruses on it and then touching their mouth or nose.

  Can we continue eating pork

Seems like we can ! Even if the raw meat contains these viruses , they are killed during cooking . Hence a properly cooked pork dish cannot cause Swine flu in humans.

Having said that , I do suggest people to buy pork only after knowing or verifying that the meat comes from a proper and clean environment . And that proper hygiene is maintained throughout the supply chain. Also remember not to half-cook it , because swine flu or no swine flu , pork might always contain tap-worms .

So take proper precautions and keep enjoying your favorite food and do consult a doctor if you are not feeling well.

pork dry fry

You waste life when you waste good food . ~ Katherine Anne Porter

Happy Eating !!!!


  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
  2. Everydayhealth
  3. WebMD
  4. Hindustan Times
  5. Babycenter

A New Beginning

Sunrise to symbolise new startThe journey of a thousand miles starts with one step. ~ Lao Tzu

The dream of doing something for myself was kindled a long time back and being a computer guy , a website was just about the easiest thing to begin . So here it is, the genesis of my site , the beginning of a dream turning into reality in the virtual world .

An engineer by profession ,a foodie by choice and a traveler at heart . That kind of sums up my about me section .

As of now , this site will be focused on the two things I am most passionate about , namely eating and traveling . Lots of ideas are in store , lets see how this works out . So everyone viewing this website , please feel free to leave feedbacks and do keep revisiting .

See you soon!!