Postcard from mumbai

can’t pretend that a million people haven’t already discovered anything I have,but my friends will confirm that the ‘secret’ I most like to share with newcomers is that of the chicken berry pulao and sali bothi at Café Brittania.

Written by MangalDalal | Published:January 4, 2009 3:39 am

A secret you discovered about Mumbai?
I can’t pretend that a million people haven’t already discovered anything I have,but my friends will confirm that the ‘secret’ I most like to share with newcomers is that of the chicken berry pulao and sali bothi at Café Brittania. The owner,who must be well into his 80s takes orders,tells stories,shows pictures and most importantly calls you a ‘good boy’ if you order correctly.

An Indian product or service you can’t do without?
The full service haircut,complete with hair cut,head massage,hair wash. The opportunity to have almost anything delivered is extremely helpful in a city with so much traffic.

Any fashion tips for living in India?
No,unless you’re looking for fashion tips on how to live in

India and still look like a tourist. To me,beach weather means beach attire—shorts,baseball cap and chappals whenever I can get away with it.

Dared to try street food?
Definitely—nothing compares to a good vada pav.

Except for maybe some of the concoctions on Muhammad Ali Road or a good kathi roll. It has proven risky at times (and always unhealthy),but the taste isn’t matched anywhere else.

A phrase you’re bound to hear?
“Arre wah.”

Your road experiences?
Not a lot of travel for pleasure yet—but I have been around the country,often for work. Morjim Beach in Goa is great,and Kerala is a place I’m going to spend more time. I have a long to-do list.

What is sexy about Mumbai?
That is a good question. Please let me know what you think and I’ll look into it.

Have you been conned yet?
Probably every day,at first. But seems like people know I live here now,so I haven’t had any issues in a long time. Some taxi drivers still think they can get clever with me,though.

Truly,madly,deeply,Mumbai…
What I love about the city is how relaxing it is to go down to Colaba on a weekend and walk around,watch some cricket at Azad Maidan and spend some time in the sun,walk along Marine Drive.

What are the similarities or differences between Mumbai and your hometown?
Both Michigan,USA,and Mumbai have a lot of coffee shops and movie tickets are overpriced. That’s about it.

Mumbai,the cultural capital?
Of course,all of the cultures of India in one city,and a lot of international influences too. It may not have the richest history of any city in India,but lots of nightlife,art,diversity and constant activity in general—it’s always buzzing.

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