The Chinese are coming. I mean, they are already here. Here, there and everywhere else too. They are vending everything from toys to Ganpati statues, to high end Mont Blanc pens. It actually is a mistake to even get into listing stuff they are into, even if its for a sake of citing an example!
For, next to God, the Chinese are everywhere. I have no doubts in my mind, that they have a plan to upstage God too.
Their presence is markedly well known. Any wannabe powers that be, in the media or in the political circle will speak about the ‘China’ factor. The missiles, the economy, the border issue and such else! Which has been around for as long as China and India have been around and is not going to go away anytime soon, at least until some of our newspapers and news anchors are around !
So, lets talk about an even more pervasive Chinese invasion!
There is little space for doubt that the title of ‘national dish of India’ title must go for Gobi Manchurian. Across the country, wherever I have traveled, if there was one sign of national integration, it is Gobi Manchurian !
You could have different clothes, suffer from different politicians, chew and curse on completely different regional media, have customs as different as Orange, Blue and Green ! But ‘Gobi Manchurian’ : is ubiquitously present and unites us all.
To think that a land of a billion people is united by Cauliflower cooked in a Indo-Chinese concoction, taking the name of a geographic region in China can be mind boggling. But thats the truth.
We may fight over North India Vs South India. Or the East Vs West. Outsider Vs Insider! If the dosa scored over the naan. Or for that matter how Makki-di-Roti and Sarosn da Saag score over idly saambar. Those are arguments that never end. (Until the time, ‘Payasam’ comes into the picture. At which point, all discussions cease. At my home, that is).
But, mention ‘Gobi Manchurian’ at any forum! I have only noticed an evolved understanding. A seeming brotherhood of bonding. As people go silent and smack their lips ! Across the country !
It can have its regional variations and can taste completely different in different parts of the country. Ranging from the lovely to the lethal. Yet, the bonhomie it fosters is unfettered !
In one of my travels, I spotted this !
Gobi morphing into Gopi naturally caught my eye! I have a few friends who go by the name ‘Gopi’ and my mind wickedly went to think of sending this picture to them. I was wondering what would an appropriate message be, to accompany this picture ?
‘From Cauliflower to Hot dude – Made in China’. I thought, thinking of item two !
And then, looked at item three on the list. ‘Gopi, the single man jury’, I thought. Then, retracted from sending that SMS. My friend may not be offended. But the Chinese may be and knowing that the Indian governments strict policy is not to offend China, I sent only the picture.
‘Who is this ?’ came the response from two of the three people the message went to. The third friend sent in silence. My friends seemingly had disowned me.
I didnt think much as the Cauliflower settled in my stomach. It was a worthy cause after all. National Integration and all that. With Gobi Manchurian you see !