A TRIP TO THE LOCAL CITY MARKET
I belong to that new age generation who takes to technology very fast. As a result, I normally prefer shopping online. The burgeoning number of e-commerce websites offering such wide variety of jeans, t shirts, pajamas etc to choose from has made life so much simpler. However, one day all hell broke down, my internet connection wouldn’t work. My niece was starting school the very next day and wanted to see what options are there to buy in kids school bags. This emergency induced me to take a bus to the local market. Going to local market after such a long span was an experience of its own.
An account of my day at the local market
We decided to go to Kolkata’s once essential stopover but still famous New Market. It is the common name for the labyrinthine Victorian shopping arcade constructed during the British Raj, when Kolkata was at its peak of glory. The entire region covering the market is a large extravagant bazaar with street peddlers selling items ranging from books to clothes, to almost anything imaginable. As we entered the market, were greeted by cries of vendors calling out to us. Fighting through the crowd of people we finally managed to find a thin by- lane which was exclusively devoted to kids school bags. We were greeted here by sellers calling us out to their shop belittling their neighbouring ones. The accusations and counter accusations of unrealistic prices and fake products that they threw on each other made me wonder how co-existence in such close quarters is even possible for them. However, ignoring their calls we went straight to a shop, which to our naked eyes seemed to have the maximum variety.
From the wide variety of kids school bags shown to us picking the right one proved rather a task. At last, having chosen one, the shopkeeper quoted a price comparable to branded ones in the market. On hearing this unbelievable price we quickly left the shop but were soon called back by their repeated pleas. This time, after some bargaining we stuck a good deal.
As we re-entered the main street, the pushing from the crowd started again. As we were passing by I came across a vendor selling some tops on hangers. In the age of online warranty I was sceptical to invest in a roadside vendor. But the cute floral print of a t- shirt got the better of my resolve. After buying it we realized we were terribly hungry.
The pangs of hunger brought us to a small restaurant serving South Indian meal. Having indulged in some delicious dosas, idlies, vadas and not to forget a cup of buttermilk to complement, we took the next metro rail and returned home after a fulfilling day.
Because a change is always welcome….
This short trip to the local bazaar with just two purchases left me completely tired and exhausted. I feel the constant shouting and pushing from the crowd showed a retrospect effect. Although, I would still prefer my online purchases of kids school bags, purses and clothes as it lets me strike a good deal without so many hassles, yet I wouldn’t mind other emergencies that takes me to the local bazaar from time to time. The T-shirt I bought turned out an excellent investment and I am sure there are many such hidden gold mines left to be explored. Moreover, the sights and smell of these bazaars are incomparable to the impersonal feel of online shopping. So head out to the local markets once in a while and maybe you can lay your hands on some rare gems.