After 4 years, I had this opportunity to come back to Kolkata. Things have changed a lot. Kolkata exhibits a lot more of the conspicuous consumerism that one would associate with
The first one is that the national dress of Kolkata and Bengalis per se- the muffler, is still going strong. Agreed, this is January, but still, outdoor temperature at must be close to 40degrees Celsius. However, you will still find half of the population walking around with mufflers around their neck covering their ears and the top of their head.
The second is the Kolkata Book Fair. There is nothing like it in the entire world- the size and the crowd. Book fairs at Mumbai are pygmies compared to the one at Kolkata; and the one at Delhi lacks the energy and mass of the Kolkata crowd. It’s amazing how millions in this city still adore books; how teenagers of party-hopping age buy books on Che Guevara and “
In this age, where a book lover can keep himself occupied only by shelling out in excess of Rs400/book in a store like Crossword (which looks more like a furniture store with restaurant waiters dresses in black), Kolkata book fair continues to provide respite. After all, one can buy a swank hard-bound “The Communist Manifesto” at a Barnes and Noble in
winter (whatever passes off for winter in Cal) is the best time to be in Cal - it is cool and there is alawys something happening, the handicrafts fair, the book fair... I am making do with the Strand sale here in Bombay right now :)
Two positive changes in the last year or so: (1) if you live in Salt Lake, you can actually go to a movie without having to almost manage a project and (2) if you work in sector V, you have a choice of places to eat! If you have suffered canteen food for long years, you will know what I'm talking about.
One thing that hasn't changed: taxis still refuse to go to Salt Lake after 8:30pm or so.
Have you seen the new India search engine
www.ByIndia.com they added all the cool features of popular productslike MySpace,YouTube, Ebay,craigslist,etc.all for free to use and specifically for India.Anyone else try this yet? ByIndia.com First to Blend Search,Social Network,Video Sharing and Auctions Into One Seamless Product for Indian Internet Users.
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