Thursday, March 22, 2012

Only in Kolkata...

  • will you find a Marwari Mahila Association banner right next to a "pork meat shop"
  • will you find ladies wearing their finest dhakai and tangail sarees and make-up for a morning walk or a trip to the machher (fish) market
  • will an entire market close down because of a death in one storekeeper's family
  • will you put four locks on your front door and still feel unsafe
  • will you find veggies at the rate of Rs 10/kg
  • will you find more ponds than public gardens
  • will you start your day with a mouthful of sweets to go along with some fine Darjeeling tea
  • you could have an hour-long conversation with a neighbour at your gate, without really inviting him/her in or going out yourself
  • will you find streets and shops named after Hahnemann and homeopaths
  • will you  begin the day by reciting Tagore's poems instead of prayer
  • will you be expected to sing at any gathering... and it better be good!
  • will you be able to dig into the most succulent chelo kebabs at Peter Cat
  • will you be discriminated, not on the basis of caste, but on the basis of which football club you support, whether it is Mohun Bagan or East Bengal
  • will you find more hand-pumps than street-lights
  • will you find trams and tramlines that serve no real purpose
  • will you find spacious yellow Ambassador taxis that create more traffic chaos than anything on road
  • will you find minibus drivers who think they are riding in tanks
  • will you find almost no cows
  • is paneer an expensive commodity (because the mithaiwalas stock up all the good stuff)
  • will cha (tea) be the most ordered drink in a coffee house
  • will you realise that Hakka is not just a noodle but a dry Chinese preparation made by a tribe of that name
  • will you find Chinese who speak Bengali fluently
  • will you find ghosts in public libraries and the old governor-generals' residences
  • will you find a pair of handmade boots at a Chinese shoemaker at Bentick Street for Rs 500
  • will you find policemen wearing white uniforms and black boots
  • will there be one Bollywood hoarding among hundreds of Tollywood and Hollywood ones
  • is the rupee called taka
  • will you find streets named after officers of the British Raj
  • will you find men walking around in colourful batik kurtas
  • there are more henpecked men than anywhere
  • not eating fish is really a big deal
  • an afternoon siesta is a must (especially after all that rice you've had for lunch)
  • 7 pm is prime-time for Bengali TV channels
  • you wouldn't be caught dead trying to catch fish at the neighbouring pond
  • you will ditch the peanuts and opt for some jhalmuri to go with your drink
  • cricket matters only when it's played at Eden Gardens or Sourav's in the team
  • power-cuts can extend to upto 12 hours or more
  • embroidery is still a hobby
  • girls wear pants and waistcoats to school
  • reading is still a habit
  • a walk to the market is considered an exercise
  • "adda maara" (a chat or gossip session) is more a necessity than a pastime
  • will you find the most mouth-watering spicy Hungarian sausages at Kalman at Free School Street
  • will people be bothered about what's happening in Dhaka than in Delhi
  • Mamata is "Didi" but Rahul is certainly not "Baba"
  • painting the town red means a completely different thing
  • in spite of all the water around there is little potable water
  • English is the second language
  • no meal's complete without the meat
  • politics is part of life, work an aberration




  

1 comment:

Ramesh Narendrarai Desai said...

Good description of Kolkata ! If you want more about the people of Poschim Bongo, please see a SWOT analysis of people of West Bengal on http://rameshndesai.blogspot.com/