This is the second post in the ‘Quirks of Indian cities’ series. If you have missed out on the first post, read it here.
Delhi holds a special place in my life. It was my home for a decade. Thus, I know it closely. I know how it feels to be a local in Delhi. I am aware of its ‘quirks’ and fancies. Since it’s the capital of India, people have a certain perception about it. If you look deep into the real Delhi – the Delhi that it used to be many decades ago, it’s a classy city. There is a lot to learn and discover in Delhi. It has got the heritage of supreme architecture, an awe-inspiring history and a world-class culture of literature and art.
But, the Delhi that you get to experience as a local is somewhat like this -
1.Delhi is a major hub of big fat Indian weddings.
A wedding is a grand affair in Delhi. Everything from the bride’s attire to the venue and the menu has to be ostentatious. Nothing is modest or believable. The funniest part is that the bridegroom
always usually arrives when half of the guests have left. I
remember at one of my friends’ wedding, I could catch only a fleeting glimpse
of the dulha (groom), because it had
got quite late in the night and I had to rush back home.
Image source: www.myweddingplanning.in
2.A Delhi belle cares too much for her vanity.
Watch out for Delhi damsels! They are hot and happening. They dress well, carry themselves with élan and care a great deal about looking good. Well, I am not implying that all of them have great taste in terms of make-up and clothes, but some of them are real head-turners.
3.Delhi’s weather has its own mood swings.
It could be foggy while you are leaving home and it could turn sunny while you are still on your way. Sometimes the winds are furiously wild. Monsoons arrive as late as in September. Winters are harshly cold and summers are unbearably hot. But I have to admit, spring and autumn are quite enjoyable.
Also read - Why Visit Delhi In February
4.Delhi is a shopaholic’s bliss.
The shopping options in Delhi can drive anybody crazy. From Chandini Chowk to Connaught Place, Sarojini Nagar to Khan Market, Lajpat Nagar to South Extension and not to forget, the designer boutiques in Hauz Khas - you will be spoiled for choice. Phew!
|Khan market's back lanes|
5.Delhi is overtly class-conscious.
Yes, Delhites have a certain conceitedness that they can’t seem to overcome. They like to show off their jewellery, clothes, cars and possibly everything under the sun.
6.Most of the DTC bus drivers & autowallahs are funnily frustrated.
When I say ‘funnily’ frustrated, I intend to imply that they have reasons for their rude behaviour. They feel that they are underpaid. Autowallahs, in particular, try to dupe people at the train stations. As soon as a person exits the station, two or three auto guys come and try to fix a deal with the new scapegoat.
7.The ‘Punjabi’ folks amuse unabashedly.
Delhi primarily has Punjabi culture. West and North Delhi represent the picture of standard Punjabi folks, who are a bit loud, funny and also quite friendly. They can say anything and get away with it. They live life king-size and don’t care much about anything.
|High-end designer stores in Khan market|
8.The fanfare of festivals is something that you can’t escape.
October is the month that kick-starts the season of festivals in India one after the other. Delhi celebrates them all with brazen pomp and show. The streets get jammed, the shops, salons and the markets are packed; and discount sales, sweets and gift vouchers take the lead.
9.A typical Delhi home-cooked food is tongue-enticing.
In my opinion, Delhi food is often given more attention than it deserves. I have been to the iconic Parathewali gali and I don’t think the Parathas were anything out of the ordinary. But what I truly adore when it comes to food in Delhi is the home-cooked stuff, or should I say a Punjabi home-cooked food. A typical weekly lunch menu should look something like this – Rajma chawal, Chhole Bhature, Shahi Paneer, Egg Curry and Began ka bharta. Simply scrumptious!
Image source: www.timescity.com
10.The ‘old-world’ resonance is still there.
Delhi’s broad roads, big bungalows, old alleys, traditional shops and book stores have obstinately preserved its true essence.
There are two faces of Delhi – one that you will see, and another that you will have to unveil.
What do YOU think of Delhi? Does it intrigue you?
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