I was in Pune recently, hanging out on a friend’s balcony when I spotted this motley family coming up the road with a bunch of random things in hands, on shoulders, in arms. Slowly they unpacked their stuff and the long stick thing turned into a tightrope. But though they called out and beat a drum, there were no takers for the show. I was too far up and definitely not a worthwhile audience, so they re-packed and started to move off – except this time I was finally able to see what the dad was carrying Shravan Kumar style in his baskets – his youngest two kids!
I came out of lunch at the Phoenix mills mall area a little while ago, and this dude was outside the gate accosting people with his wares. And his smile was blinding enough that people might have been depleting his reserves to protect themselves from it 😉
Two takes later, his smile had sort of faded on me, but the bravado hadn’t. I just adored his attitude. He was totally cool with my taking tourist-style photos of his, erm, 13, pairs of sunglasses.
There are several of these dudes who criss cross our neighborhood on these decked out bikes, crying “jhadoo, mop, wiper” in their sing song voice. I just love the sight, though I confess I have yet to give any one of them business… but when I lived in the States, I often yearned for an old fashioned stoop-and-sweep ‘jhadoo’. I never got the hang of the witch-type brooms.
I think I like the Rastafarian feather dusters best, though the red halo type rings are very intriguing, too.
This was taken in the ‘backside’ of the rather happening Saket PVR shopping complex – boasting a multiscreen movie theatre, lots of bars & restaurants, a coffee shop, 3 music stores … (and every ATM besides ICICI bank’s!)
So, if you need a shave before going to any of these places, here’s the old-school nayi under a tree.
I think this is one guy who’ll stay in business even as the other ‘service professions’ die out in the wake of modernization — the door-to-door kabadi wala (recycler), naak-chhidane wala (ear piercer), and the cycle-mop-man (watch this space — coming soon!) are on their way out. This guy, with his sharp razor and the one-chair + mirror overhead will stick. What do you think?
No one at home likes this stuff, but I am turning into a shakarkandhi chaat fiend. I could live on this stuff. Well, all winter long, when it’s available, anyway…
It’s basically a sweet potato that’s been slow cooked over a coal fire and then peeled, diced, and shaken in a few spicy masalas and lemon juice. So yum! And hey, it’s cheap, easily available, low in calories and has a low glycemic index. Who could ask for a better snack? 😉
In South Ex market, I spotted the chhuri-sharpening guy — sharpening knives with his self-powered bicycle tool. Pretty cool, eh?