T Nagar et al

My first brush with T Nagar was during my wedding shopping.  Since then – going there has given me immense pleasure.  Its a complete shopping experience there – with the mighty huge shops which stocks everything from paatreh samaan(vessels), pattu batteh(silk clothes), chinna, belli, (gold, silver) etc. etc.  Of course we\’ve had our share of bad experiences as well.  My f-i-l had once got his pick pocketed in which he lost 5 grand.  The reason why we go there again and again is the immense variety of items and the real cool prices out there.  Of course the people add to the whole experience.  Panagal Park, Ranganathan Street, Usman Road, Pondy Bazaar, Thiagarajan street and the endless stream of shops.  And sometimes standing in front of the shops in a hot April summer day – itself is an experience in itself with the perfumed cool air of the AC streaming out to cool your heated head (heated due to your wife nagging you to buy more pattu or more chinna).  And at times you have unique events like RMKV with their longest saree or the Pothys motifs outside, cartoon characters outside Chennai Silks, the endless stream of people going into Saravana stores for clothes (I particularly avoid that shop as its more for the cheaper crowd).  You have people who pack their nashta, oota and tindi (breakfast, lunch and snacks) and eat it amidst a day long shopping spree.  You may even get lost in a shop and wont know which side you came in from and which side you came out from.  And then you have the maavin kaayi(mango) vendors with the juicy succulent fare.   All in all – its an experience in itself.  Here is a forward that I got from my colleague Kavitha B. on T Nagar:

btw. the pic attached is the one I shot at sterling resort – Mahabs

Where is this T.Nagar?

Nobody knows accurately. It is just this lovely place in Chennai, which if you decide to visit for the second time, you get a free seasonal pass for a window-side bed in Kilpauk hospital.

Sounds like a holiday package..what if I manage a third visit?

You get one year free admission at Yervadi, next to Sethu Vikram. Cost of chain included in the package.

Oh! You said it\’s a lovely place. Do people go there for sight-seeing?

Kinda yeah, it is Chennai\’s own version of \”Suicide Point\”

Can we shop there?

There are just two things you can do at T.Nagar . One,shop and two,die.

The former is optional though.

My wife wants some good silk sarees. Where do I take her?

Push her into Pothys and run. This is your best chance to live with some self respect in future.

What if I stay?

You automatically qualify for Bihar elections.

What if I go in too?

If you are Gopi, you\’ll come out as Gopi 65.

I heard gold is pretty cheap at some place there?

Very cheap yeah, not just the rate. I guess you are talking about Ranganathan Street, Annachi shop.

Ya ya. How do I go there?

You just need to stand at the start of that street. Close your eyes.

Open your eyes. You are inside Annachi shop, courtesy : fellow shoppers.

Can I take my vehicle?

Shut up! Even Laloo wouldn\’t do that!

Oh is it very crowded?

Yeah, by the time you count the number of people around you, they can telecast Junoon twice.

Junoon?? What\’s that?

Kadavule! Paathathu illiya Junoon neenga? Periya athu megaserial.

Pesuvaanga maathi maathi thamizh athula.

Oh! By the way, do men shop in T.Nagar?

Wise men stay away. Married men do shop.

I heard there are lots of platform shops?

There is no platform. Only shops.

Whatever, how good are they?

Very good infact. You get all sortsa brands including Nykee, Ribok and Adeedas. At cheap rates that too!

Hey isn\’t that phony? The spellings are all messed up!!

Naah. They have been changed according to numerology, that\’s all.

Fine. Is there any good restaurant there?

Ya, Saravana Bhavan.

Wow! What would I get there for, say 50 rupees?

Quite a lot. Half a dosa, 5 ml Sambhar and some pebbles.

Pebbles? Why??

Huh, you are dumber than a crow! To raise the level of sambhar ofcourse.

No chutney is it?

They have it in a big vessel near the entrance. You are allowed to take a peek.

That\’s bad. But I heard there\’s a hot chips too?

You\’ll be a hot chip yourself once you step into Ranganathan Street.

How is the air pollution level in T.Nagar?

One deep breath and you\’ll die on the spot, money back guarantee.

So many issues, eh? Finally, what\’s the best thing about T.Nagar?

Variety. So many shops, so many dresses and so many accessories. Even if you escape death by other mean, you\’ll be confused to death!

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