So getting a gas bottle is something of a palaver.
You have to register your address and get some kind of paperwork to have one. I assume because every now and then, they blow up. There’s a reassuring thought, eh?
Once registered, to get a refill you take along your current bottle and swap it for another that’s full.
Very straight forward. Or it is when you speak the local languages, know where to take it or still have a driver who can do all this for you.
This is exactly what drivers do during those long dull days when their bosses are at work, and they’re between naps.
However, I have neither a driver, nor a clue where to get a new bottle.
It’s not even my bottle – it came with the flat and I suspect might be still owned by Dreamworks. Which means it’s registered somewhere else, and I have no idea where.
And that gives you some clue to what’s going on here. I’ve NEVER changed the bottle.
At this point, if you’re an Indian reader you’re looking very puzzled. Everyone else will be thinking – so?
See the thing is, that in a normal cooked food type home in India, you would get through a gas bottle every three or four months.
However, I eat a lot of raw food… and it has been… wait for it… well over TWO YEARS and I’ve never changed the bottle.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve also got a small combi oven and microwave, so I do eat warm and hot food sometimes. I just don’t cook on the hob that often.
Apparently, almost not at all.
Even my maid doesn’t use it much since I’ve cut down on her bland attempts at cooking. I’ve relegated her to chopping and grating these days: though to be fair her dhal was very nice.
A while back, a very dear and kind friend offered to send her driver over to sort the entire gas bottle thing out for me – this is very kind, as they live miles away. But she’s a Brit, and understands that helpless feeling of having no idea how to deal with this type of thing at ground level in India.
We were talking about it the other day – how I’d still not got to the bottom of the bottle, and she pointed out that her offer was made… well over a year ago. Blimey. I really don’t use the hob much.
But now, finally after two years of holding out valiantly against refilling, it’s beginning to show signs of getting near the end. When I cook there is a sputtering, which is apparently a sign of things coming to an end. Obviously, I don’t actually know that first hand, as I don’t cook enough to have ever had to replace one in the entire 3 and a half years I’ve lived in this country. Because yes the same thing happened to me in the year I spent in Kerala. Ahem.
So now what i find happening is that I’m avoiding using the hob at all. I really should eat more raw food anyway – it’s terribly good for you after all. So when I think ‘I’ll cook!’ – I think about that bottle and I quickly think, ‘no, I’ll juice!’
I’m even fairly sure that if I asked my building manager, there’s some kind of delivery service I could avail of, if I only knew about it. I could probably ask the neighbours, to be honest. Though they might be more shocked that I’d emerged from my home office and was moving about socially to be able to help with such basic things as gas bottle filling.
But no, instead, I push the damn thing out the way on it’s little wheels, and move purposefully towards the blender. And, I confess, feel ever so slightly smug that I’m living a 70% raw lifestyle.
This is not strictly true of course. It’s not exactly by choice. Patently, I am simply a coward.
Gas bottle, you have currently defeated me. But I will be victorious!
You know, when it actually runs out (sometimes next year perhaps?)
This is part 3 of a 3 part post
Read part 1 – That gas bottle is staring at me
Read part 2 – The gas bottle: my nemesis in the kitchen
If you’ve enjoyed this post, why not check out some of these ever so vaguely related food posts:
And do share your kitchen related thoughts below.