Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Green Veggies Anyone?

I went to a supermarket today. To a supermarket which I had never stepped into till last month. I have lived here for almost 8 years now and was probably one of the rare variety of species who never visited this Indian supermarket! And must I say, I was so proud of not stepping into that boring, messy,cheap place?!(Yes I was a judgemental). Till someone told me how nice the place is, how good the vegetables are and that how she drives 30km. just to come to this store which is at a disctance of 3 kms from my house! So you see the power of "word of mouth"? (Well more about it in the next post!).

As I stepped into the store, I saw green vegetables. Every possible Indian vegetable - neatly arranged for you to pick and choose. Long green bhindis (okra), peas, borcolli, spinach, methi (fenugreek), dill, coriander...everything! I got so excited! I know I might be sounding stupid here but I have to admit I get a high when do grocery shopping now!!

As an unmarried girl, I would get so impatient with my mom when she would stop the car if she found a vegetable guy selling good gobhis(or any other veg for that matter)!! She would stop and move from one hawker to the other, chosing and haggling all the way. To top it all, the driver would be as excited as her and guide her on the way - whenever she missed a hawker!

*"Auntyji papita 10 rupaiy kilo mil raha hai yahan par"
"Nahin woh ghar par thele wala 8 rupaiy me de gaya hai aaj"
After a short distance...
"Auntyji aam acchey rakhen hain yahan. Dekengi?"
(It was as if he was getting a cut from those sellers and he would'nt stop enticing her till she stopped!!)
(Another reason why I wouldn't drive her around. If I drove my condition was clear - the car would not stop anywhere mid-way! She agreed most of the times, but well she still made me stop everytime!! That's what moms are made of you see:))
This would go on till my mom would finally decide that something is actually cheap and good. Then the haggling would start and I would lose my patience. I would want to go home at the earliest so that I can do something better like watch TV, listen to music or talk to a friend on phone...
Life has changed in so many ways. Not that I regret it or anything - in fact I enjoy it much more than I ever did. But sometimes you remember old times and small things in life which bring a smile to your face. Today is one of those days. I mean literally - I was smiling and shopping. Guess the guys over there thought I am one lunatic woman! Or maybe they didn't...they were too busy working to notice me smiling away to glory...
Now I truly understand the thrill my mom would get from grocery shopping :)
*Aunty (that's how he referred my mom) papaya is for Rs.10 over here"
"No the hawker at home gave it for Rs.8" (In india most people buy from hawkers who come home to sell the veggies))
After a short distance...
"Aunty the mangoes are good here. Do you want to see?"

Pic Credit

20 You Spoke:

Agnes said...

I am smiling to ear to ear as I am reading this.

I love local Indian vendors and their goods. Even though their veggies aren't as big and shiny as their supermarket counterparts, they actually have the perfect flavor, they smell a gazillion times better and they taste soooo good!

What a great post!

Goofy Mumma said...

Oh! I so get you on this post. If you don't mind, please tell em what market is this, I would love to visit it.

aneri_masi said...

I know exactly what you mean! I had never been to the sabzi-mandi back in India, so don't know my mom's routine, but I sure do like going to my local Indian store for veggies, and picking them out and thinking about what I would make with them!

Piper .. said...

what a happy post :):) Personally, I dont like going to the markets in Kolkata. They are slushy and smell of fish, even if there`s no fish being sold! :):) But your post did bring back a few old memories and happy ones at that!

my space said...

Lol! I can actually picturise..remember she would stop and buy melons,grapes,watermelon..and Pal running along...but seriously I feel we are turning into mini avtaars of Mom..I too get escastic when i spot fresh vegetables and fruits and have stared stopping and buying just like her!!!

DeeplyDip said...

@Agnes: I'm glad you liked the post :)
Yes those vegetables are so fresh and full of taste cos we do not get all vegetables in all sesons (though this have now changed and people are getting used to the imported and frozen stuff...)

@GM: I'm sur eyou would've been there - the whole world (except me!) has been - Lulu!!! ;)

aneri_masi: oh you are one lucky girl - if you didn't accompany your mom to the veg market!!Yes grocery shopping has become quite exciting for me too :)

Piper: thanks! *smile smile* Ya I've heard that kolkatta is a very dirty place but never been there.

myspace: and remember shakeel too?!yes we have gone on her-except for bargaining which i am very bad at!

Piper .. said...

heyyyy no no, Kolkata isnt a very dirty place. Its a beautiful place you must visit. You heard WRONG!! Only the markets are dirty. But that`s everywhere. I dont know of any place in India where the local 'sabzi mandi' is NOT dirty!
- A very defensive Piper :)

Goofy Mumma said...

Kolkatta is as dirty as Bombay, and that is true, have lived in both places so believe you me. ;) Has its super swanky places too just like Marine drive in Bombay and then places like Bhayender too. i hope you are familiar with Bombay.;) Was going to say something else, but just read the last comment by Piper!

Which Lulu are you talking about. The one in Sharjah, known as Al Falah Plaza, does not boast of very good veggies, so far I have found the best ones in Spinney's albeit a bit costly.

Indian Home Maker said...

I can so relate to this!! Although I also have a passion for fresh green veggies, I don't shop on my own, the local grocery guy delivers it home, but I have seen my sister going through the same sequence, all her fruit and vegetable shopping was done like this, her kids hated it, I asked her to get an extra papaya :)

dharmabum said...

it is interesting how we look back and remember some things about life.

veggie shopping is one, and probably the only kind of shopping i really enjoy. i am game for a trip to the market place anytime, if only to buy vegetables :)

Renu said...

Since we lived in a small town, my mom never bought vegetables ever, and then My H is so possesive about his vegetables and fruit shopping, will never let me do it ever, so quite a novice in that, but i love going to the super markets:), love that feel:)

Just call me 'A' said...

i love the colors of vegetables...esp when they are arranged neatly in a row and have that spark of freshness.

Reflections said...

U knw.....as soon as u wrote Indian Supermarket I immediately guessed it was Lulu:-D!!!!

Just 2 days back I was at Lulu Hyper & was hitting myself as to why I'm stocking up on more tomatoes when I alreay have tomatoes at home. But those big, juicy, plump tomatoes just made me turn a blind eye to minor details & I went ahead picked another 2 kgs;-P

So will u go there again?????
Go in the mornings & the crowds will be lesser. Seriously the crowd is a big turn off even for me:-S

Shalom said...

Oh yeah, there are loads of these tiny lil shops tucked away in Abu Dhabi too, with great Indian veggies....not that I paid them any attention at that time, single girl mindset & all that :)

But now, if I get great fruits & veggies anywhere, oh man, it is such a terrific high!!!

DeeplyDip said...

@Piper: lol..you are the first one who says Cal is not dirty!! but i totally understand your sentiment :) and yes all subzi mandis in India are dirty...

@GM: see Piper...no one says Cal is clean ;) yes GM Mumbai is the same...dirty and posh go together hand in hand...
I am talking about the ne Lulu in Bur Dubai (coming from Gahoud bridge...after Sana Signal)...this one has some very good indian veggies...as for spinneys...yes they have very good fruits and veggies are decent too but after seeing this lulu i would say lulu beats it...check it out sometime..

@IHM: lol...you are a naughty masi! home delivery is such a boon in this day and age :)

@Renu: so you all grew veggies at home? in the backyard? that sounds soooo good! Lol...lucky you...i wish my hubby would also share this burden with me :) (although now I don't think I'd like him to control what I want to cook and serve!)

@Just Call Me 'A': so true...and nice to see you after so long :)

@Reflections: we think alike!! Lol...we all fall for that supermarket trap...buying everything else but the items on our list! yes I would go there again...ya i go in the afternoons so don't get any rush either...but the crowd in this one is quite alright...check it out sometime...(look at me! i have been blatantly promoting their outlet...hope someone from Lulu is reading this and is kind to me ;) )

@Shalom: Funnily I haven't seen much of Abu Dhabhi - have been there 2-3 times but not really seen seen the place...
how our priorities change in life...

Iya said...

hi..coming here after a long time..i hadnt blogged rolled u so missed out on all these posts..lazy me, let me blog roll u right away!!!

this post has a very nostalgic feel about it :)

lots of reading to be done...

Piper .. said...

heyy..long time. Hope all`s well with you,my friend.. A belated happy holi!

Reflections said...

Yep came to ask the same question as Piper:-D!!
U busy???????

Yeah well busy is good in these times:-D.

DeeplyDip said...

@Iya: thanks for stopping by :) I'll blogroll you right away too...

@Piper and Reflections: feels nice to be missed :) :)...yes got a bit busy with ork. new post coming up soonest...

Mampi said...

See how life comes full circle with the papaya and the aam.

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