Monday, January 4, 2010

It costs peanuts!!!

A ten day trip to India with a wedding thrown in is very, very frenzied, to put it mildly. There is stuff to be done, jet lag to be gotten over, family to be met, cranky child to be pacified and kept awake. Not to mention dealing with your own crankiness because of lack of sleep. In a jam-packed day, there is not a moment to be had for the self. After all, what is the point of travelling half the way across the world if you want a moment to yourself?

But in this sea of chaos, an island of some us-time was found. In an unplanned sort of way. After BigGeek, Chip and I met Kiran and Rohini and the delightful Krish and Ayaan and baby Tarana, Kiran dropped us at the Shopper’s Stop. In between afternoon tea, and dinner with the sister-in-law and her fiancé, there was work to be done. BigGeek had forgotten to bring his ties , so we had to buy ties and cuff links and I needed to buy some stuff for the wedding for my sister-in-law. It was work-work.

An hour passes by in five minutes when you are shopping. We climbed down the steps of the store and I said to myself, “I need to find something for Chip to eat. He is 5 minutes away from a meltdown.” Almost, as if in answer, singdana-wala stopped in front of us. Peanuts!! Perfect snack for Chip. Also an experience for him. I called to Chip and asked he would like some peanuts. Chip was mesmerized with the singdana-wallah’s basket with a small coal burning in its center. But there was a problemo grande. How much does singdana sell for these days? Will I get laughed down if I asked for a 2 rupee singdana? 5 Rs? 10? 25? How much? BigGeek was even more clueless. We stood like two dense, naïve people who had just gotten off the red ST bus from Alibaug. In the end I asked for 10 rupee singdana for Chip. Chip was handed a small cone of singdana to his utter delight, while I thought we were taken for a ride. Then he interrogated the singdana-wallah. In Marathi. What is the coal for? What are the other things you have in your basket? Why do you have a basket? Where do you get the singdana from? The singdana-walah was quite amused. He could understand Marathi, somewhat and Chip pretended to understand Hindi, so we played translator but got tired of it and herded Chip away.

We sneaked some singdana too – Singdana here is so oily, you can’t eat it without getting a headache.. I love the dry, crisp singdana we get in India. Chip was still hungry and we were still figuring out where to eat dinner. We saw an Aarey booth and there is no way BigGeek and Chip are going to go past an Aarey booth and not drink Energy. Chip’s and BigGeek’s petrol tanks having been filled thusly, we went about looking for an auto to take us to Pali Hill.
In the end, we changed 2 (or was it 3 rickshaws) because the “place we are going to eat dinner” changed with the minute hand and in the end, the buck stopped at Moti Mahal. Chip obviously was very sleepy – the rickshaw ride had kept him awake. Also the Q and A sessions he had with the drivers of rickshaws. And the analysis of visual and functional similarities of the rickshaw starter with the starter of the lawn mower.

But the minute we entered the cool space of the restaurant, he drank his lemonade and slept blissfully (without dinner) while we chatted and had a raving good time with my sister-in-law, her fiance and my brother-in-law.

11 comments:

Sands said...

Sounds like a load of fun :)

K3 said...

your post just brought out fond memories of Engery drinks, singdana and all the other road side treats. Glad to hear that Chip seems to be loving it too.

rayshma said...

aww... i miss energy. and singdana!!! and shoppers' stop! :(
sounds like fun tho!

JanuskieZ said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Rohini said...

Smiling at Chip's fascination with the singdana seller :)

PG said...

loved Chip's conversations.

Vinita said...

Go To "Five Guys' a fast food chain which originated from Washington Dc/Virginia area. They have complimentary peanuts in the store with small to go trays.
http://www.fiveguys.com/locations.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_Guys

Their peanuts are exactly the kind we get in India. But because they are free sometimes kids can fill themselves up on peanuts itself.

But its fun. Its a big hit in texas. the place is always full.

karmickids said...

Yup, straight off from the bus from Alibag in that lovely silk kurti...
Hope the dinner at Moti Mahal lived upto expectations, and now can we have some new posts please...

dipali said...

Very nice:)

DotThoughts said...

Sands: it was!!

raysh, K3: i know.. was very nostalgic!!

Ro : :)

PG:lol. :)

Vinita: really? BigGeek and Chip have been wanting burgers for sometime now.. I always jinx their plans because what am I going to eat in a burger place? This is awesome :) Thanks!

karmickids: :P

Dipali: :)

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