Introducing Vincent Van Ross
Vincent Van Ross is a freelance journalist and writer. He writes on national and international politics, defense, environment, travel, art and culture, social themes, spirituality, philosophy, conservation and a whole lot of other issues.
Vincent’s articles and features have appeared in The Hindustan Times, The Pioneer, The Hindu, The Tribune, The Statesman, National Herald, Sahara Time, Speaking Tree (The Times of India), Daily Excelsior, Northern India Patrika, Himachal Times, Free Press, The Free Press Journal, The Sentinel, Newstime and several other newspapers and periodicals in India. Currently, he writes a weekly column called ‘Musing’ for the Bangladesh Newspaper ‘The Independent.’
Vincent has been on the editorial board of several small and medium publications. He is fond of writing humour. His humorous writings have been carried in the ‘Morning Cup,’ ‘Flipside,’ ‘Silly Point,’ ‘Guest Column,’ ‘Musing’ and middle columns of newspapers and magazines.
Apart from these, Vincent writes fiction, poetry and dabbles in creative photography. Some of his Hindi poems were included in an anthology of Hindi Poems called ‘Guldasta’ some 15 years ago. Many of his English poems have appeared in national and international anthologies. Several of his English poems are posted in various sites on the web. He has also blogged for renowned community blogging sites such as SiliconIndia, Instablogs, NowPublic, FoodIndustryIndia, Wayn and SpeakingTree besides his own blogging sites in Blogger and WordPress in addition to being member of several poetry and writing sites on the internet.
Vincent was one of the directors of the Press Club of India, New Delhi in 2009-10 and nominated member of the ‘Legal Committee’ of the Press Club of India in 2010-11. He was an adviser to the Delhi Union of Journalists (2013-14). He is a member of the National Council of the Delhi Union of Journalists for the year 2016-17.
Vincent is a life member of several groups interested in nature and wildlife, writing, photography, art, conservation, environment etc. and has been office bearer on several councils and committees of organizations dealing with social issues, environmental and charitable causes as also promotion and conservation of heritage monuments as well as nature and wildlife.
Unity in Diversity
Indian has twenty-nine states
And, seven union territories
Each state has a different language
And dozens of ethnic groups
There are dozens of religions in India
There are hundreds of dialects
There are thousands of ethnic groups
But, I have an identity of my own
There are all shades of skin in India
From white to sallow
From sallow to brown
And, from brown to dark complexion
Many of us have Caucasian origins
Some look like Mongoloids
Some others have Negroid features
Races of all hues are here
Every state has its culture and costume
Every state has its own cuisine
We are diverse in many different ways
But, we are united as a nation
India is a mini-Asia
India is a mini-World
India is a mini-Universe
It stands for unity in diversity
© Vincent Van Ross
Indian at Heart
I am an Indian by birth
My name is Vincent Van Ross
People attribute my name
To a Dutch descent
I cannot trace my lineage
To Dutch ancestors
I do not even know
If I have a Dutch connection
I was born and bred in New Delhi
The Capital of India
I have lived all my life here
And, this is the city I love most
I live in the plains
But hills are not far away
We have deserts in the northwest
And, oceans in the south
It is chilly in winter
Sweltering hot in summer
It pours like waterfalls
And, is pleasant during spring
No matter where we come from
No matter where we are settled
No matter what we are
We are Indians at heart
© Vincent Van Ross
Recipe: Rava Upma
Rava Upma is a popular south Indian breakfast. It is a simple recipe that is easy to make and fast to cook. Upma is a corrupted form of Uppu Mavu. Uppu means salt and Mavu means flour. Semolina is also a form of wheat flour. Rava means Semolina. Semolina is called Rava in south India and Suji in north India.
2 Tb spoon oil or clarified butter
1 Tsp Mustard seeds
1 Onion finely chopped
1 Inch ginger grated
1 Green chilli finely chopped
I cup semolina
2 ½ Cups of water
¼ to ½ Tsp Salt or as per taste
2 Tb spoon chopped coriander leaves for garnishing (optional)
Heat oil in a pan
- Add: Mustard seeds in hot oil and as it begins to splutter, add onion, ginger and green chilli and sauté for a minute.
- Add: Semolina and sauté till it gets roasted.
- Add: Water and salt and mix well
- Cook for two minutes.
- Rava Upma is ready. If you like, you may garnish it with fresh coriander leaves.
Enjoy this salty dish with accompaniment of your choice. It tastes great even without any accompaniment.
Shades of the Same Skin is an anthology of culture. The world is in need of a vigorous seasoning and it is why the poets in this book are willing to share their ethnicity. Each one will give some insight into their culture, music, clothing, food, traditions, and even share a few recipes. Some will engage in unique stories and folklore. Others will take us back to their childhood days and compare it to the experience of children today. A few will even welcome us into their homes to share items from their heritage.
This is also a book of unity. Its purpose is to show that without diversity, the world would be a boring place. Each poet in this anthology has a unique style because of where they came from, their experiences, and who they are. Their words are printed on these pages to inspire why we belong. We are all vital ingredients for the recipe to keep the world stirring.
Shades of the Same Skin is Available at the following Retailers:
Create Space: www.createspace.com/6171447
Creative Talents Unleashed: www.ctupublishinggroup.com/anthologies.html
100% of all proceeds from this book are being donated to the “Starving Artist Fund” to assist writers in becoming published authors. Purchasing this book can help a writer become a published author!