Thursday, January 21, 2010

Chaai , Chaai

Some days ago, I went to Kharagpur, and had written a whole blog on it. I was amazed at the 2:00 AM tea vendors, in full steam, earning their 1 rs from one cup of tea. Trying to find at least 5 customer per train. For them the run , the marathon is on all the 24 hours, since all night trains run all the hours.

Last three days I have been going to Purbachal , ( right behind the stadium if you are coming from Karunamoyee, or if you were to take the road that takes a left at the Hyatt Regency ( if you are coming from Ultadanga) , on the By Pass. Purbachal is where the apartment culture of Salt Lake starts. It is one of the famous ones other than the central government staff quarters and Laboni.
Well, if you are coming from the EM BY Pass you will at first see some make shift slums ,strategically placed so that the foreigners with their Nikon and Canon SLRs dont have to hunt far for a picture of the abject poverty of Indians . The walk out of the Hyatt, check for cars on the left and right and then cross the road, click pics to take way back home as a souvenir of what they saw in India.

One of my friends in US had asked me , ( she was a pen pal, in times before mobile and Email ) "Do I go to school on an elephant?"

I really really did not want to break her heart. I also heard from a friend in Los Angeles that her father always taught her that if she were to grow up and understand how lucky she is and that she should stop whining, she should visit Asia, or atleast India. I believe China now poised to become the second largest economy officially this year, the west rather set their vision of these countries correctly.

Still , coming back to the point, if you were to take the road that divides the FD and FB blocks, ( the big road with by lanes on both sides and buildings making the road look like a valley amongst the giant walls of human settlement)

This road is wide, and does not see much traffic. The cold there was unforgiving and the bite early morning around 6 , still claws inside me.

End of the road , if you were to turn right you will hit Purbachal cluster 1 and 2 and between the cluster 2 and 3 , near to the Martin Burn gate to the Salt Lake stadium you will see this chaai stall

Early morning, draped in shawl, the woman there was cutting the onion and green chillies for some Aloo sabji , The dough was not yet done.
The old man in the picture, asked us, what we want, gave the 2 teas and went back to his seat .
Laid back , complete laid back.

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