The ones who stay

05 Nov
by in Main

A photo posted by Nicolas Mirguet (@scalino) on

Here we are…
After being those who used to leave, who used to say goodby to their close family and friends to live new adventures… This time, we are the ones who stay.
These last 2-3 years spent in Bangalore, we were lucky to build a group of friends, expatriates for most of them, who were very close to us. Far from our families and far from our longstanding friends , we found a bit of both in this group.
We knew we could count on each other in case of problems of course but above all for partying, dining, organizing apéro in last minute, going to Goa for a week-end or leaving for a motorbike trip in the countryside. We were seeing each others a lot and we never felt we were alone.

But expatriation last only for a couple of years for most of people, so we now see our friends leaving one by one to new horizons and new lifes full of promises. Even if leaving is not that easy, it’s also very hard to be the one who stay (whith some remaining friends, fortunately!). There is nothing new for us, we have to be able to reinvent our life with the same ingredients.
Being entrepreneur, we made the choice (maybe not consciously) to invest our time and our energy for the long haul… Our new challenge is now to build a new life in Bangalore to keep this excitement which thrilled us during the first 3 years and a half we’ve spent here.

Summer in Europe

13 Oct
by in Out of India

Waiter in front of a restaurant - Firenze
Rainbow of tourists ponchos - Firenze
Ponto Vecchio with dramatic sky
Sandwich Porchetta - Firenze
Bologna from the Tower
Bologna gallery
Wedding in France with Indian Jasmin
Paris, île Saint Louis from the Seine
Bateau-mouche full, Paris
Palais Royal and contemporary statue

In the life of any expatriate, there is this special relationship with the “mother country” as we call it in France. Some have decided to turn their back to their country of origin, criticizing it everytime they can with a bit of dishonesty. Some others, on the contrary have forgotten all the bad parts of their original country, haven’t always decided their country of expatriation and are projecting an innocent, perfect nostalgic image of their home country. Everything would be better there and all the problems we face here are the fault of our new inadequate new country.
So, to avoid this kind of unrealistic relationship with our country of origin, France, we’re going back there at least 2-3 times a year. So that we don’t lose the bond with our family and friends also. Traditionally, we went back to France this summer, playing the perfect August tourist to enjoy the long summer evenings, barbecues, “pétanque” games, energetic baths in the (cold) Atlantic and even a small boat trip on the Seine river in Paris.
And not to feel a bit frustrated to have done “nothing”, because seeing places we know already doesn’t count, we made a détour by North Italy (Bologna and Florence), so that we can stuff ourselves with some perfect pasta, italian delicatessen and classic architecture.

So when we came back to India, filled with Europe and calm, we were ready to continue to try to make a niche for ourselves in this fascinating and irritating, energizing and exhausting country that is India.

by in Bangalore, Food, Slideshow

Le Casse-Croûte Bangalore
Petit pot de début !

We haven’t talked about it until today but we’ve been preparing for more than a year our second entrepreneurship project in Bangalore. In addition to Titri and the outsourcing field, we wanted, since we arrived in India, to create a project allowing us to get out of the office and in the food industry as we just love it.
We also felt from the start that there are some opportunities to grab in this field in India.

We’re not alone on board, an other Nicolas, previously intern at Titri (that’s how we’ve met him) is on this project 100% of his time. He had the persistence to stay and develop the project during more than a year before the adventure finally came up, so kudos to him! When we say that the most important thing in India is patience, it’s not a joke…And as if two Nicolas weren’t enough, a third one has joined us very recently!

We’ll skip the details of the last struggling months to finally reach the objective: we’re launching this saturday our food-truck named “Le Casse-Croûte” !
The idea is quite simple, serving toasted sandwiches (inspired by our french croque-monsieur), customized with our ideas, good french fries (cooked the north France and Belgium way, double fried), gaspacho all fresh all good, and caramel cream as dessert. We wanted something french (or at least european) but simple cause western cuisine is most of the time only found in high level restaurants here. We wanted to show that we can cook “french street food”, not that expensive and with local products. Indeed, we import nothing, we wanted to do it the “locavore” and the homemade way. So we’ve learnt to make bread, French mustard etc… If you want to know more about that, visit our website here.

Concerning the truck, we wanted something with character and, as you might know, we love “vintage” vehicules. It has been a long time we had a crush on the Matador, a long Indian van with nice curves, sort of VW combi but more “rustic”.
So we’ve bought one (not in a good shape) and after some adventures we’ve found a mechanical and a kitchen maker to modify it and turn it into a wonderful foodtruck! (it took us more than 6 month!).

After a session with friends last week-end, the D-Day coming this week-end with our launching event at the Alliance Française in Bangalore where we’ll serve from 1pm to 8pm if the weather (and our stocks) are allowing us. We’ll also organize a little “pétanque” tournament from 3.30pm so if you are in Bangalore this Saturday September 12th, join us!

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