Monday, March 25, 2013

Deepest but not darkest foot!

Yesterday evening as both kids were sleeping elsewhere Simon and I went for a walk. Not any old walk but a tour into an urban village. Behind Garuda Mall, a bright new shiny mall complete with a Marks and Sparks and multiple designer labels, lies what was Old Shoolay, now called Ashok Nagar.

Never more than here is Bangalore a juxtaposition of the old and the new, the young turks in their designer duds drinking latte and cappuccino only a few hundred yards from the tiny windy streets and alleyways hosting those hanging onto a by gone age.

This was the maiden voyage/walk of The Walking Co, led by Pramod. A group of some of his family and friends and us! This is India so we started in a tea stop. A really charming little tea stop. However
the chai was not forthcoming, so we enjoyed the ambience, sitting low on pallets covered with cushions, tables were upturned varnished crates and light provided by wonderful tea pot lamp shades, and then started  sans chai on our walk.

Its was almost like being in Dr Who's TARDIS. As we cross the busy street and are swept back in time. The entrance to the village is a temple which had twice been visited by Mahatma Ghandi. We saw the plack and faded yellowed newspaper articles to verify.

Bangalore was historically a collection of villages....the trade of this one was money lending, some of the original pawn shops are still in place today and creating floral........arrangements. Arrangements  seems too small a word.....for the huge creations made  on frames such as this for weddings.

Urban development is strong, powerful and unyielding  but some of the old trees, even the corporate developers circumnavigate. Have no idea what this tree was but just that it was humongous!!

And then into the village proper..........where life is conducted on the street and the ancient traditions prevail....



We walked exploring this hidden gem in down town Bangers until the twilight gave way to night. Then we bid our fellow walkers good night, confident we will join Pramod on another tour into a another hitherto undiscovered part of Bangalore. So cool to find these hidden parts of history off the beaten.

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