Sunday, March 6, 2011

Street Snacks

We took a trip last weekend to check out the Mogul gardens by the Presidential palace grounds here in Delhi. It was our third year to visit the gardens and it's always a treat. Especially because the weather this time of year is near-perfect. Definitely the best time of year to be in India! These gardens are some of the prettiest in India. The gardens were originally laid out by the British, but modeled after the style and symmetry established by the Mogul Emperors. Because the gardens are only opened to the public for one month (15 Feb - 16 March), the later you go in this 30 day window, the crazier the entrance to the gardens tends to be.
There is a huge crowd of local, and international tourists, school children and local residents milling about outside. A loudspeaker blares instructions in Hindi through a distorted sound-system telling you all that you can't bring inside. The list includes cameras, cell phones, chewing gum and water. As with most public events, gents and ladies line up and enter through separate queues for security.
Streetside, the chaat wallahs are lined up selling snacks to all the visitors. Everything from cotton candy, to bhel and panni puri to aloo tikki, pakoras and samosas. Of course the kids' favorites are the ice cream vendors.
These guys can be found almost anywhere, but line up one after another at special events to sell their "Mother Dairy" and "Kwality" brands of cones, popsicles and cups.
Our Saturday outing was a great way to experience the sights, sounds and smells of "Springtime" in Delhi.

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