Monday, May 19, 2008

Great Eastern Ramblings: Part I - Can we leave now?

Day 1 and 2- Calcutta

In Transit: Landing in Calcutta is a pretty sight since all you see is little houses with lots and lots of coconut trees in the middle. Looks like a little village in Kerala! We’re on the way then to the company guest house when I see an ad for Big Bazaar which states "Isse sasta aur kahaan milega?" In that sleepy state of mind (I had slept for a total of 2 hours before being rudely awakened so we could catch our flight) the 1st thing I think of is that ad that warbles "Hum hai naaa" (The product eludes me. It might have been a bank...)

In the taxi I can think of only one thing. What horrible horrible horrible weather. If it had been any more humid, I’d have to protect my ears from passing fish :| After almost 75 minutes in that infernal vehicle, in the glaring sun, I was hoping to die a fast and painless death. We reach the guest house finally. I'm still alive but not particularly happy about it. We go to the guest house which has 2 cooks for us 3 little people, who start blushing royally when we praise their food (or should I say knightily keeping in mind it is IPL season).

Sights and sounds: Being right on Park street, I get super delighted at the sheer quantity of street food! Being a person who cud survive on this alone (to the horror of my parents), this was my best impression of Cal yet. Seeing a familiar sight, I point out a sign to my dad... I say "look, LST!" (referring to my former law school entrance coaching class.) My dad looks, smiles and nods. After a minute, he descends to earth and says "What??? LSD???" Sigh…………….. A couple of sheepish smiles at people who are staring at us and we speed off…

Tourist Attractions: In a nutshell. Indian museum sucks. Victoria Memorial is awesome. Town hall is very interesting. Belur Math is amazing. Dakshineshwar temple is filthy and not maintained at all. Am not much of a museum person.

Random Perceptions: Off the top of my head…

  • Calcutta has at least 6 types of buses. I counted.
  • The puchkas are nice but I think I prefer the pani puris of Bombay.
  • The street food culture there is mind blowing.
  • I love it that they call their streets Saranis. Like Ho Chi Minh Sarani and Shakespeare Sarani!
  • The weather till around 530 pm is a terrible horrific combo of that of Jodhpur and Bombay.
  • Yummy yummy sweets! Try the Prabhu Bhog at KC Das sweets.. or was they say, K Shee Daash.. really!
  • It might be better than it seemed to me, but I''m so glad I don't live there. No clue how people love the city so much.
Thank you to Sannoy, Snigdho and Arnab for planning out my Cal outing and i pray they don't kill me for my less than enthusiastic opinion about their city :)


another brick in the wall said...

"If it had been any more humid, I’d have to protect my ears from passing fish"


"What??? LSD???"

hehe... i'm telling u.. they are trying to get themselves ready for the worst :P :P

somehow calcutta seems like a city filled with "sweaty" ppl.. dunno why.. i just hear calcutta and i can imagine all ppl sweating their hearts out :S