Vantage point

Monday, March 01, 2010

Du kya ek repTa?

I was born in Indore but never lived there for more than a couple of vacation weeks every year. However, I did spend almost every summer and diwali vacation there until I went to college. So I have always had a curious and amused outsider's perspective on the city and its people. Indori folks accents, mannerisms, their way of (barely) doing business, and their immense self-confidence.

So I was delighted when Mohit forwarded me youtube bits on Indore by this guy Rajiv Nema. Each of them is incisive and hilarious.

The one I enjoyed the most was this, about shopping in Indore. As a kid, I would often get dragged by my mom as she and her sisters went on day long shopping expeditions in cloth market, sarafa bazar, MG Road, and all these places which scarred me for life. Even when I am picking up groceries in Walmart, I worry that some Indori employee will jump out of the jeans aisle and say "Dyekh to lo beeya, dyekhne ka koi pesa nee." Anyway, this bit perfectly captures the sort of conversations that Indori garment shopkeepers have with the ladies who shop there -

I also spent many childhood vacation hours with my parents looking for the address of whichever one of my fifty seven million relatives in Indore we were going to visit. This bit seems eerily similar to most of our attempts to ask people for directions. Where, more than telling you were to go, the people seem interested in talking about some direct or indirect connection with the person you are visiting.