It’s amazing how a city grows on you ❗ When we first came to Hyderabad, there were so many things we missed.hings – eating out at a Darshini (small self-serviced outlets where you can stand and gorge on yummy idlis, dosas, refreshing filter kaapi etc..). Bengaluru is filled with them and you could safely barge into any of them and be rest assured that you can get some tasty if not really delicious fare. But this city of Nawabs hardly had them (It has changed a little now, with some Kannada folks opening them up at different places).

What people were more used to here is eating at bandis (carts on the roadside), and cycles on which a single man carries idlis and dosas in one big dabba, chutney in a carrier, and pakodas and many other kinds of fritters in a large polythene bag. Ofcourse, were were not used to this before. But then, I saw every single person in my team at work starting their day with punching in at the entrance and then heading straight to a bandi nearby. It was on one such day that I decided to tag along with them to see what these bandis actually had to offer.

And it was amazing! Very clean, fresh food, great taste, the patience and dedication of the people who run the bandi and to add to it n ocean of people – the IT folks, the IAS officers whose colony it was in, the auto drivers, the municipality personnel – all eating alike, with no barriers whatsoever! Yes, it caters to one and all by offering 6 idlis, 4 pooris or 1 big dosa all for just Rs.20/-, with as much chutney and karam podi (a spicy powder) as you wish to have.

Today, I took Amma and sister who are here for the weekend to the same bandi (My ex-workplace and our home are just streets apart, so this bandi is close to where we stay too) and they loved what they ate and saw!

The chaos at the bandi where people are competing with each other to get their dosas and idlis, while also understanding that those who are older or with kids  should probably be given the first chance is amazing. It is like one huge family of people eating out together breaking all barrier. I wonder how the lady who issues tokens and the husband who makes dosas maintain their sanity with so many people pouncing on them 😛

And this underlying chaos makes it so full of life. The bandi is one thing I will surely miss when we leave this city which has grown upon us, and move back to our home town.

Seemingly small things, but such a big part of our lives 🙂

The idli batter going into the steamer!
The idli batter going into the steamer!
The rush for the dosas!
The rush for the dosas!
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