Delhi A Belly Full Of Exotic Food And A Mouthful
Delhi – A Belly Full of Exotic Food and a Mouthful
Anyone who has stayed in Delhi for 05 years can easily claim to have tasted some of the best food in the world at the swanky restaurants spread across the central and south Delhi or in the smelly by lanes of Chandni Chowk and Jama Masjid which beckon the carnivorous and herbivorous eaters every evening with their tangy and spicy North Indian, continental and oriental cuisines.
Having grown up in Delhi since last 45 years in the midst of noise and vehicular pollution, I became bald by the age of 33, struggling to achieve that ever elusive success which Dilliwalas so avidly talk about over a cup of tea while sitting in a café or a roadside dhaba with their friends. Any discussion, meaningful or nonsensical, ends with a grand meal at a nearby takeaway serving Butter Chicken and Dal Makhani or at an upscale restaurant serving Sushi, Jim Jum or Cacina.
In spite of being served at the best restaurants across the globe, you haven’t arrived if you have missed the brain curry at Kake Shake Da Hotel or mutton burra and galoti kebab at Karim Sharim. If you have a wife who has been brought up in Delhi, your in-laws will gauge your love and care for her by how many times you take her out to a restaurant and her phone call to the parents after coming back from dinner is a true indication of your marital success or failure.
Dilliwalas love to party as it is an ever expanding city which offers immense opportunities to its inhabitants to celebrate and equal amount of setbacks to sulk and then throw a party to come out of depression. If you see neighbors having a drink with chicken tikka in a car parked outside your society, they are either discussing their bored sex life, or bitching about their boss in the office or they are upset about paying a bribe to a government official who has been successful in extracting few thousand rupees from them during the day. Two pegs down and they vent out their ire on the officials with best of expletives till the time they are through with the last peg and their anger and frustration can be witnessed in the morning with the paper plates and broken whisky or beer bottles strewn around the parking lot.
Another trait which Dilliwalas have possessed over the years whenever they are eating out in a restaurant is to chat and laugh at a record breaking pitch to make themselves loud and clear in public as if they have been suppressed long enough by their post independence rulers and being part of the democratic society gives them the right to free speech at high decibels which usually amounts to ruining the dinner of the docile and soft spoken guests sitting on the table next to them.
If you have been looking forward to a quite dinner at a popular Delhi restaurant with your family after slogging like a dog at the office, I suggest get it packed and have it in the car or at a nearby park where even the dogs will have the sensibility to just snuff the food and walk away without making a noise or else you will end up fighting with the chit chatting dinosaurs in the restaurant who will turn your evening into a nightmare and you will be on your way back home wiping the whipped cream and tartar sauce spilled on your Marks & Spencer’s jacket.
Gossiping is a daily ritual of Dilliwalas that starts early morning over a cup of coffee in the office and is a day log affair ending on the dinner table. Delhi’s women are a great bunch of gossipers with their own gossip clubs and missing gossip with their friends and acquaintances is on less than missing their menstrual cycle. They will dig out a topic for gossip from the earth’s crust and after a long session of bitching about their relatives, friends and neighbors, the gossip usually ends with a parting note: How does it matters to us, it’s their life, their problems, why are we wasting our gray matter discussing their private lives?