Sunday, June 12, 2005

A Windy Day in Madras Summer.

Madras hides a romance that is hard to uncover. But those who have seen and enjoyed the beauty of this place know to wait patiently and endure the initial resistance of the place before reaping the benefits. For me Madras has always been the home I loved(and still love). A home from which I have reluctantly trudged outside (sometimes kicked out by parents) as a result of career compulsions. Any place in any part of the world I go, I have always stopped and wondered how it would be like to stand in Marina beach or shop in Ranganathan street. There is an irresistable charm to the city that I cherish so much. The clash between the invasion of the modern world and the stiff resistance offered by the tradition steeped and conservative city has been quite a sight to watch. Madras has managed to remain the same inspite of allowing certain concessions that the modern world demands. There are the pubs and the dance floors for people who seek the material pleasures. But the city, from its splendid temples to the ding-ding mobile sompapodi (sonupapdi) sellers, has still managed to hold on to the meta-physical romance that has been its core charm for many years.

Madras summers are one of a kind. As my uncle constantly says, the graph-diference between post-bath, pre-bath and never-bathed-in-my-life converges to a single line in Madras. Because there is really no difference, three minutes after the bath you are sweating worse than the pre-bath stage. The humidity is so unbearable that it sometimes clouds your thinking. Which is why strangers find this city a tough nut to crack. The welcome into the city is so sweaty and unsettling that in 2-3 hours you are almost playing catch-up. You are trying hard to collect your thoughts, moping sweat off your forehead, first with the Hand kherchief and then preferably with a super-sopper. It is the folks who fight it out for the first few days (well.. okay sometimes maybe weeks) who actually live to enjoy the pleasure that the city offers. Which is why one day that happened two or three weeks before stands out. It was such an atypical summer day for Madras. Windy, no-sweat, pleasant days during the summer is such a rare phenomenon that it stopped happening since "Kodai Mazhai" bombed at the box office. The movie and the concept failed to find place in this part of the world. Well! we received a phone call from people in other parts of Chennai and we thought they were kidding, so we carefully switched off the AC's and peered out of the window. And to our surprise, it was true. It was whooshy and windy and surprise! surprise! - not sweaty. That was the day my wife decided that the time was ripe to raid Pothys. That famous cloth shop in the juction of Panagal Park/Usman Road/Doraisami Road.

The wind had a howl'sh note to it and was blowing the dry leaves from the ground like a mighty vaccum cleaner. I love riding a two-wheeler during such days. You know cyclists, bikists and all the other folks are trying to cover their eyes with one hand ( to protect from the dust) and then drive with the other hand. There is that smell in the air ( Mann Vasanai) that makes you feel it is almost ( almost) going to rain. There is a sudden activity among people in the road. As if they had been part of an ant colony that has suddenly been unsettled. Maybe its just me,but hey..I always feel people are doing things faster during a windy day than any other day. The auto's seem to cut the corners more sharply, the cyclists find gaps that are just angstorm units wide. There is general laughter in the air. It is pleasant. The weather that had seemed like hell yesterday is suddenly enchanting, even romantic. It almost as if everything is forgiven and yesterady's heat has been forgotten. It seems that even the person, hanging out of the PTC bus, one who is the last among the 15 people who have a foot on the last step of the PTC bus, is also having fun. Probably only 2-3 square cm's of the person is actually inside (or touching) the fast moving PTC bus. But the sudden coolness and the wind blowing around makes him feel as if this near-death commutting is a walk in the park. There is a spring to almost everything that people do.

I love being in Usman Road. The whole scene -- Usman Road, Ranganathan Street till T.Nagar Bus stand excites me. Usman Road is in someways the heart beat of Chennai. My friends tell me that it is among the top 5 places in Asia where the most money is transacted per day/Per square foot. Seeing Usman road, I am surprised why it isn't among the top 5 in the world. The Southern Side of Panagal Park/Usman Road/Durai Sami road Junction has so many businessmen per square inch that if you dropped a 1 lac bundle on the road, people may not have time to pick it up. Well mainly because they are looking to loot the money that is on the person that they arent really focussing on the road. I detest Pothys. These evil, powerful and rich people are almost representative of the Sith or the dark side. In my opinion, if you serve free food ( not crappy food but good food) in a Hall, you may not get as many people in the hall as much as you would get in Pothys or G.R Thanga Maligai ( It is a Gold Shop). The thronging crowd of people who are desparate to spend so much money never ceases to surprise me. People stand in lines for hours to throw away money in exchange for cloth or even worse metal.

This makes me laugh when they show India as a poor suffering country in the Discovery channel. When I am walking around in T.Nagar with a pepper smeared unripe ( Unripe with a captial U N R I P E ) Mango or guava in hand and doing my window shopping, I look at people standing in a queue outside Thanga Maligai, demanding to be let in. Once inside, there is a huge clamor to gain the attention of the sales person. You would be forgiven if you thought he was the Chief Minister or somebody who was giving out money for free. It does appear that way. But he is selling gold. Yes! GOLD! Those expensive pieces of metal blocks, that are malleable, ductile etc. These are the metal blocks that can be moulded into different shapes and sizes that fit punchered holes in the human body. Looking at gold ornaments, I always think, "isn'this the metal that is used fix/punchure the holes that human beings put on their body" . Women self-inflict injuries on themselves -- in their ears and noses in order to make it a Jewel-Stand. Sometimes men do it too. I have a ring and I always thought of it as a useless tool. Somehow hanging Metal Au (where Au = Aurum) in holes drilled into my body never appealed to me. The guard ( who also moonlights as a traffic cop) outside the Jewel shop, would ask me if I wanted to stand in the queue. He, sometimes, would advise me that if I wanted to get inside in the next one hour, I should stand in the queue now. I'd just say "No thank you! I just wanted to buy fried ground nut thats sold outside for a buck". I have thought Dubai airports displayed people's shameful lust for jewellery but Dubai is a road-side tea-stand compared to Usman Road.

Trying to find a parking space at 1:00 PM in the afternoon near Pothys was so unimaginably difficult. I parked right at the end of Pinjala Subramaniam street and Venkat Narayana road and walked back to Pothys mustering just about as much grumpiness as I could. This did not deter my wife though. She ran like a bee among flowers inside Pothys causing as much damage as she could. Even the drama show inside Pothys did not stop her. I stood there aghast. There is some theme that this shop doing now. There are a group of 50-60 actors inside Pothys and the whole shop has been decorated to make it appear as if its some medeival kingdom. According to my wife, not knowing about this concept when it was advertised on TV for so many days makes me an outcast. Maybe I dont watch enough of those crappy Mega Serials (it seems that the pathetic cry-athon Metti Oli is finally going to die..at least I know so much) to catch the advts and find out what is going in town. But I was rudely surprised by what I saw. There is a throne at the end of the hall as soon as you enter Pothys. A king and a queen sit there. The King has a crown and there are two maids on either side of the crown with those huge feather fans, which they are waving at the bloody king's face in an AC hall. Feather fans in an AC hall!!!! C'mon ON!!! I am not sure what kingdom this king represents but there are a group of ministers sitting on chairs in front of the throne. Some drinking stuff is being served to everybody there by servant-like-people. They are seriously discussing something. I couldn't hear much of the dialogs. But I desparately wanted to be an "ayal naatu thoothuvar" (foriegn ambassador) and disrupt the proceedings. Maybe I could have told them that the enemy wanted to invade the kingdom. If that didn't cause any impact then maybe I could have said that the Income Tax officials wanted to raid the place. That might have set this sorry little kingdom on fire. My wife tells me that this is a new theme by Pothys as part of its new marketing initiatives. They are going retro. The filthy stinking rich bullies. So they have built a kingdom thing inside with kings and queens. It is supposed to be entertaintment for the customers. I was not impressed. People being treated like puppets is worse than that Laugh-dude in VGP Golden beach.

So I decided to enjoy the rare windy day in T.Nagar. Did I say it before ? I love being in this part of town. On a windy day such as the topic under discussion, the veshtis (dhothis) and sarees, worn by people, are flying uncontrollably. Its a struggle to pluck from a cotton candy and deliver it to the mouth. I saw one kid struggling to do just that and his mom tried to help him. Time wears by and she grows impatient of feeding it to him one strand at a time. So she plucks the whole darn candy and tears it into two. Stuffs some in the kids mouth and the rest in her mouth, picks him up and walks away fast. The shopkeepers who have illegally setup their mobile shops on the road are covering up their shops fast.The wind is disturbing the fake toys and the instantly breakable 10 paisa bangles. It is funny to watch people start their scooters when the wind is trying to part them of their dhotis. They have a bent head and an embarassed laugh as if they are actors on stage and suddenly they can't remember their lines. And there is some urgency to their actions as well. Why hurry when its windy and move like a tortoise when the heat is burning? I wonder. The lady who is also holding on to her fluttering saree is urging her husband to start the vehicle soon. I guess they are thinking if they dont get the vehicle moving in the next few milli-seconds -- all the 500000 people in Usman road will stop and watch them.

The landscape of this place has changed so much. Yet the emotions remain the same. Ofcourse there is a jarring note here and there in the melody of Madras. I used to go for my high-school tuition classes to Guntur Subbiah School, Venkat Narayana road from Doraisamy road. Cycling (Hercules RockShox.. eh :-) ) through Usman road -> Pinjala Subramaniam street and Venkatnarayana road was so pleasant then. I didn't even know/care if it was Summer or winter and never felt the heat. Seeing the New RMKV, the New Nalli and this giant beast called Pothys in Usman road, I reminded that times are changing. In those days cycling on Venkat Narayana road used to remind me of the Nizhalgal-hero waltzing around in the same road for the song "ithu oru Pon Malai Pozhuthu". Now the road reminds me of the software invasion, when I see a big Virtusa building raised up there. It has been a long time since I walked around in these parts of the city. I used to do it so frequently years before. Then, the summer heat did not deter me from just walkng around and enjoying the simplicity, the hustle bustle, of this place. Now that I am here after a big gap, I want to walk around these streets even more often. I just hope more windy days will come and cause people to enjoy Madras. The real romance of Madras hides behind the kherchiefs and sweatly towels. There is a pearl inside the ugly oyster known only to -- and cherished only by -- the people who actually look for it.

47 comments:

visithra said...

oh wow - that was beautiful - now I wanna be at T nagar :((( Not fair!

Er 10 paisa bangles?? Can you tell me the place, would love to buy them ;p

Atta Girl said...

A friend took me along the road that goes to 'Mayajal' theatre...and suddenly he took a left turn...and whoa! emerged the untouched beach side. Absolutely clean and the weather as beautiful as you've described. That's the chennai that is strongly etched in my mind....(I'll spare you of my coimbatore fascination!)

And T Nagar, how can i forget that place. Me too raided Pothys, dunno which festival was going on...but even in the staircases some face painting etc was going on! and boy it was packed...but I was happy that i found sarees for my mom.

After working on advertising for "Epang Opang Jhapang" & "secret of energy" ;-) brands, I can rattle of Sun TV's programme list in no time - talk metty oli or mangalayam or annamalai..!

Don't know if i'll visit TN again or not, but your post has made me ultra nostalgic!! :-(

anantha said...

:((

U made me cry, bharath and I am not saying this jlt.. I really have tears in my eyes..I miss T.Nagar, I miss Chennai.. I miss home..!

Anupadmaja said...

Great post. I just love your in-camera narration :) I know i cant write, but man i really can appreciate your writing style.

Would like to mention that the connotation about Microsoft in the comparison with Pothys is very sad.
Am curious to know why you hate Microsoft so much!

Anonymous said...

Man! Well written.. Ah.. those lovely days roaming around in usman road... they will never come back :(

Ram said...

Bharat,

Very good post, though it was diluted by external factors like Microsoft, which don't belong to this discussion.

Anupadmaja said...

Hey fired up Anonymous,
I guess i too am entitled to my opinion then. See Bharath has clearly mentioned that only those who really cherish a similar feeling about Chennai can relate to Bharath's experience. I guess thats true. Myself, Anti, Visithra and atta girl did! So if you did not relate to it, then you just dont get it! Bharath did not mention that this was a level-headed analysis of Chennai.

Yes, i agree that the Microsoft part was totally uncalled for! But dont blame the Chennai part coz the MS part hurt you.

Suresh Ramani said...

Is this the same Chennai that is in the southern part of India??? jk .. :)

I dunno about romanticising Chennai, but I do know that the charm of chennai is not easily realized, and that is what most people complain about ;-)

Ram said...

Anupadmaja.. are you sure that this anonymous is not Bharat himself playing devil's advocate?? I'm suspicious! ;-)

Anupadmaja said...

Hey Ram,
In that case, Bharath got a good share of praise and bitterness i guess :)

Also, i dont think bharath would himself write saying he appreciates his writing style a lot!

Even if it was the devil's advocate i will still stand by my point. The good bharath did bless us with the romantic nostalgic electric ... whatever :)

Good catch though :)

Hawkeye said...

visithra,

I think u just visited india. so batteries should be sufficiently recharged.

10 paisa bangles..err..hmm.. (runs away)

Hawkeye said...

anti,

while ur batteries need a lot of recharging. I hope u can manage a vacation and spend sometime down here.

Hawkeye said...

AG,

I know that place !!! Thats what we call "our private beach". It is a wonderful place. Me and my folks always go up there.

If you cross Mayajaal and keep going.. there is a "nithya kalayanar temple" and right opposite to the temple rooad i a path that leads to a beach. That place is simply splendid. Completely private and so serene. When u get engaged take ur guy there. I can say with experience its awesome :-)

Hawkeye said...

Ram, Anu,

come on guys :-)

you have hell of gall assuming and discussing that the "anonymous" was me.. :-)

Not because it cannot be me. But I am in India.How can you assume that I woud be up at 1:00AM in the morning and write an anonymous comment in my own blog both praising and trashing me.

Time Zones guys.. u live in a different part of the world..

Hawkeye said...

General Comment:

I have heard some daughter-in-laws who did a lot of hardwork and finished 95% of the work. their ma-in-laws have scolded them as to why they missed the 5 % and harped on it forever. So while I agree MS and Pothys are a noisy distraction..it is jut a digression.

The aim to enjoy and not try and be perfect. So there ought to be some errors here and there. If people approached PG Wodehouse in a fact-verification attitude then there is no joy at all.

But for a few(who have really enjoyed madras) who got the spirit of the blog in which it was meant, I guess the others have gone off the tangent. I never intended to give out a business balance sheet and a commentary of business practises of Pothys or MS.

The blog is more about things that a man on the road observes and not what a business analyst observes.

WHere is that simplicity nowadays....

Atta Girl said...

Actually...we did cross Mayajal, and also crossed the border (the place where u have to buy a border pass or something like that), had food in a thatched hut sorta eating joint near teh beach...it was way too beautiful or was the person by my side (Sob!) :-(

While returning to the main city, I saw a car that had the number starting with "P"...my punjabi roots almost jumped at that sight --"hey, see there is a car from punjab in chennai" ...my friend immediately clarified "Dumbass it's pondicherry"...LOL!!

Next day, I had to visit red hills with our sales team. Doesn't the name 'red hills sound kinda exotic...With this image, I wore my usual capri's ....oh! reached there & realized that my dress code was not really apt for the place...more than me the shopkeepers were blushing...I broke the ice trying to speak basic tamil 'vanakkam, eppadi iri kingay'....

I can just keep writing n writing endlessly on mere 'two' trips i have been to chennai that you'll be chewed up with the twenty thousand stories i have.....wonder what the city did to me!! Sigh!

Anjali said...

Hey!No one could have described singara chennai better than u.It brought nostalgic memory to me.Given a chance any day I would love tosettlethere.MAalrum neenaivugal thinking of sundal of marina,Manga badhai dipped in mulagapodi.Sweet little memories I hold on to.

Ram Prasadh said...

Bharath
Wonder if am exactly in the city that u have ornated so much.that was really a kool article yaar.

Anupadmaja said...

Bharath,

"you have hell of gall assuming and discussing that the "anonymous" was me.. :-)"

ummm ... that felt good :) WHat you say Ram?

"Not because it cannot be me. But I am in India. How can you assume that I woud be up at 1:00AM in the morning and write an anonymous comment in my own blog both praising and trashing me."

Hey if a sinister can play Jekyll and Hyde in a public bog comment that he owns, why cant he be awake in the dark when everyone else is sleeping. Sorta kinda gives the image of Gollum huh :) Hence we never gave you the benefit of the doubt :)

I am not continuing the conversation about Microsoft coz Bharath made a genuine plead that we put the bitter techie stuff away and enjoy the windy breeze from Chennai, even in a far away land. Wow that feels good!

Anonymous said...

Can't agree with you more. There is an inherent charm about Chennai that can be felt only by Chennaiites. I used to live very close to T Nagar Usman Road and the place never ceased to delight me, no matter how many times I went there in all those years. Truly enjoyed riding my Kinetic Honda through the different parts of the city, esp, the foliage covered Venkatnarayana Road. Miss the good ol' times. The entire city gets transformed when it rains! Just magical!
~Anu

Anonymous said...

totally agree, as it has been told 1000 times only chennai people can understand. Its conservative and packed in one:)

Anyway, you seem to have worked both united states as well as india. Why not write about it. I am someone who is also thinking of moving back to india some years down the line.

anukrish

Babs said...

Bharath,
I know what the watchman wud have been thinking when he advised you to stand in the queue while you dismissed him "enna thambi kadala vaanga vanthey yaaa, illa pooda vanthengala" :-D
Wonderful blog daa machi, it brought immaculate moments back to life. I have plenty of reasons to criticize chennai yet I feel home while I'm there, something about it daaa.
I dont know if you have experienced a clean green chennai, everytime I arrive chennai in Lakshmi or Perimba Villas Travels from T'veli that early morning chennai charisma unfolds slowly starting from Tambaram, tea stall opening for morning customers with dinamalar and dinathanthi, Autokaran ripping you saying "sir you r my first bonny (bakra)", some sane ppl sweeping road sides, kids getting ready to school, roads empty, milk man dinging the bell :-), some keen health freaks jogging, a pollution free MADRAS and ofcourse finally that wonderful voice of subbulakshmi's suprabatham......
man that is heaven, imagine that day starts HOT, gets Hotter and then wind starts to howl as the cloud threatens to pour....
dude why the hell do you have to do this daaaaa :-(
Cheers,
Babs

Anonymous said...

some of my sweet memories of chennai
1. The hot air that welcomed me at morning 4.30 am at chennai railway station in the mid of september.
2. when they started and shown us a movie in mayajaal only for us. imagine watching a movie in a theatre only u and ur friend and another couple.thats it no one else.
3. my fight with the autowala in VERY BASIC tamil when i refused to pay him 40 rs. more. ( i already paid him 60 ( in the form of paying him for oil ) and he left me immediately after gemini flyover from railway stn . and from there i had to take a city bus )
4. the city bus travel. its probably the best i should say. the dives that drivers take in a heavily loaded buses is simply amazing. really the city bus drivers enjoy their drive to the best.:-)

- sriki123

Simba said...

Lot of times, people lose out the 'joy' of reading something innocuous by trying to be too critical!! :-)

My connection to Madras is almost surreal.. it comes & goes... never stays for a long time! Just wanted to say that I really enjoyed this post! Now, wana get back to Bangalore, my 'home' & relive some of the goo 'ol days!! :-)

Hawkeye said...

anjali,

you also happen havce the nick of my most favorite movie ever :-)

Hawkeye said...

ramp prasad..

get urself some gals :-) chill out and go around chennai. u may like it!

Anonymous said...

Hey Bharath,
Though I am not a native of Chennai, I have been there enough to guage its pulse. It's completely lively, quite different from my sleepy-head home Bangalore. How could u forget Saravana Bhavan when u talked abt Usman Road man???!!! The idi-appams, and the mini sambhar idlis are something to die for!!!Wonderful post man!! I only wish some of the people just cool off and stop nit-picking. makes me wanna start a blog too....

Hawkeye said...

~Anu,

the rain part is so true (though it rare.. I especially love travelling in an auto if its windy and rainy.. :-) I dunno why!!

-Bharath

Hawkeye said...

AnuKris,

Yes! I am person who has studied/worked in both places. I have been thinking about this for quite a while..i think i may not be agood/typical example..( u will know why soon)..but thats seriously a good topic to write about especially because it will help others.

Hawkeye said...

Babs,

you captured some beautiful moments on a madras morning. kadalai podara time is out dude... we are married :-(

Hawkeye said...

sriki123,

focus on the +ves man.. anyplace has its own share of problems. if u came to madras expecting auto people to give u or laddus ..or worse use the meter..u have some serious problems :-)

while i agree with u on the auto..i dont agree with u about the bus service though.. PTC, in my travels, around india has proven to be the best bus service in the country..

Hawkeye said...

anonymous,

hotel is a completely different topic to blog about :-). nobody can do justice to s.bhavan in 1 blog :-)

now that u have reminded me..i have to have the 14 idlies otherwise my head will explode...

Hawkeye said...

simba,

thanks for the visit! I am right now in bangalore.. :-)

have been readin ur blog regularly.. super work ..

Anonymous said...

Bharath,

dei.. i dont want to argue but wanna see a different chennai. see my inline comments.

>>> focus on the +ves man.. >>
I do focus on the positives.its my overlikeness for the positives of chennai that is bringing the negatives into light. i like madras and i somehow have a small feeling inside that the city needs more attention from than it is currenlty. there are always issues with every place but chennai is a metro and is gateway of south india.i definitely want to see a different chennai and the first and foremost is the change in the comments from visitors like me.

>>>expecting auto people to give u or laddus .. >>

dude ... i must be born in US to expect laddus in chennai but i am fortunately born in india and i would like to protect my laddus when i come there. ( this is not specific to 1 city, but is more general applicable to any city .. which includes delhi too ... the difference with delhi is that people take language to heart in chennai , otherwise its as usual like any other city in india )

>>> PTC, in my travels, around india has proven to be the best bus service in the country.. >>>

may be , but i somehow has a nagging feeling that bombay's BEST is a little bit ahead in terms of the comfort to lower middle class. upper middle class can always survive anywhere , but when i talk about the public transport system i have lower middle class's comfort in mind which forms the majority of people of our nation. i feel the people of chennai deserve a much better bus service than the age old bus's about which
no one is sure when the brakes of the buses fail. (this may not be true in terms of the number of bus accidents but at least they appear like that. )

when u want me to compare to a non metro , i feel hyd's metro bus service is a little bit more comfortable even for lower middle class families who have their income in the range of 5000 - 7000.
its just my feeling. may be i am wrong. but i defintiely feel among all the four metros chennai is the first city that has a possibility of becoming the best metro in the country....mumbai comes second. and i heard kolkata is not so an easy place to adjust for south indians and delhi comes to last.

~sriki123

Murthy Saranat said...

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suntv.blogspot.com.

tilotamma said...

The tree-lined venkatnarayana road.
It is no longer like that is it? I remember practising my biking in/around there when the entire city was watching the Sunday Tamil movies. The streets were pratically empty then.

The other day I got a DVD of Red Roses and say that hep building - the entire movie was shot there I think - what was it Hensman Villa.

I went into paroxyms of joy just remembering.....

Siva Sivaaa said...

Nice post indeed. I'm a Chennaite and Chennai or Madras is tightly intertwined into my life. Relishing every moment. Cycling on a windy day thru T.Nagar, Roaming around the somasundaram ground, venkat narayana rd, gn chetty road, sighting at the ranganathan st, pedalling my way to school thru the green avenues of ashok nagar, ;-)...aahh...those were days.

Really missed Chennai when I had to move to Hyderabad (a dull and boring place) due to career compulsions. I couldn't count a single day when Chennai was out of my mind.

Maheshwar said...

Could'nt prevent myself from posting a message for this write up, Bharath. I'm a T.Nagar - vasi - still having my house very close to the T.Nagar Bus Terminus and Mambalam Market.

Nostalgic is too small a word to describe my attachment to your write up especially when my anchestors were one of the first residents of T.Nagar - still claiming the greatest fact that our house is the First house if you enter into T.Nagar from the West Mambalam - Madley Road belt.

Getting back to your write-up, I am just wondering how it slipped out of your mind in writing about SARAVANA STORES who is currently in the Verge of buying each BRICK & MORTAR of USMAN ROAD !!!

I am not allowed to be surprised if there is a day when they will have it termed as SARAVANA ROAD aka USMAN ROAD. It sucks !!!!Next time don't forget to bump into Ranganathan Street- I bet you will go missing in the ocean of people.

Why don't you make a write up comparing Ranganathan Street and Wallmart ( Common factor - Reduction in the prices every day ) if it pains for some geeks when you compare MS & Pothys.

All said and done,my fond memories will always be associated with T.Nagar - temp called as
T(Thangam)Nagar.

Keep up the good work.

- Posted from Germany.

Anonymous said...

Great write up Bharath. Chennai and particularly T.Nagar & W.Mambalam holds a very special place in my heart. I don't realy live in this vincity but has a lot of friends (friends for life) in this place. Its nostalgic to think abt somasundram ground...and the time we guys spent on top of the durai swami subway. Age and money has indeed robbed all these joy from us. Keep writing abt chennai...i miss it a lot

Anonymous said...

Great post friend. I used to live bang in the middle of Usman Road/Panagal Park market but live in Bangalore these days. The number of times my friend and I would have circled the streets of Usman Road, Griffith Road, Rameswaram road, Venkatnarayana road etc. is amazing. These days there is so much crowd it makes it difficult to enjoy the place, what with the flyover construction and so on. Still, the place is charming and wonderful. Great write up. Please write more.

Sundar

Valli Doll said...

Aah nothing like wonderful Chennai, that too Tnagar...Pondy Bazaar, Usman Road...nothing can beat them! Given the fact that I have lived in Hyd all my life, Chennai is my most loved city!

Anu Russell said...

I love Chennai and I have been at every place you have mentioned...aha! Nyabagams all rekindled...nice post this.

Swamy Srinivasan aka Kittu Mama said...

stumbles upon your blog. I was super thrilled to read this post bharath. kalakkitteenga :). I became an instant fan of your writing. If you may get a chance, please pay some visits to my blog called kittu mama solraan. I stopped blogging almost a yr ago but your post is giving me the urge to write again :). Im also a total chennai guy but have been missing the city for the past 10 yrs. I'm living in New Jersey but I do visit chennai every 2 years on vacation. Happy to know you through your blog.

GREAT POST !!!

SARPPARAJAN said...

IS THERE ANY PERSON NAME WITH ISRAL WORKING IN POTHYS

Anonymous said...

I read this post and it seemed very un-Hawkeye like for some reason -- it sounded so gentle, wistful etc. etc. I felt like I have not read it before but of course I have:

*tilotamma said...
The tree-lined venkatnarayana road.
It is no longer like that is it? I remember practising my biking in/around there when the entire city was watching the Sunday Tamil movies. The streets were pratically empty then.

The other day I got a DVD of Red Roses and say that hep building - the entire movie was shot there I think - what was it Hensman Villa.*

But it was worth a re-read. :-). Hope you've been well and thanks for all the posts..

I went into paroxyms of joy just remembering.....

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