Life in Bangalore Chapter 2

| Labels: | Posted On 3/14/08 at 7:55 PM

Life in Bangalore
Chapter 2 - B for Bombay B for Bangalore

Just over a week in Bangalore and I have already created my comfort zones. These are the places where you can relax in real sense. Places popularly known as hangouts. It feels good to see known faces around, even if you don't really know them or sometimes plainly ignore them (the fear of people asking you for a ride on your bike can truly turn you into an alien). Right from the regular cigarette + cutting shops to the hotels or cafes one visits daily, it could be anything. I had them in abundance in Mumbai. But I knew if I had to settle down here fast, I had to have a few here too. In this chapter I am going to talk about such few places. The first immediate and full-proof comfort zone is the bike. It makes you feel on top of the things the moment you swing your leg over it. And from there begins the journey. This chapter will not get over till I am in Bangalore as I will keep on exploring the city and adding to my experiences. Bon voyage.

Road Trip (Off 100 Ft. Road )

Simply the idea of naming a cafe Road Trip made me a fan of it. I read about it while I was in Mumbai and made a mental note of visiting the place whenever I had a chance to be in Bangalore . And very unlike my luck, I had a chance soon. The place is owned and run by two people. I happened to meet one of them, a cool Bulletier called Pankaj, on my first visit and subsequent drop-ins.

Pankaj is an avid biker himself. One Budweiser down and I introduced myself to him. And what was intended to be a flying visit became a 2 hour long discussion section. We made friends quickly and were soon chatting on variety of subjects ranging from bikes to bikes, more bikes and some more bikes.

Everything about this place is unique. Starting with the name to the logo, which has an old time biker clad in skin tight rally leathers standing proudly next to his HD or an Indian. Inside, it's a cool lounge with some good food on offer. The cafe displays two ancient Nortons sitting gracefully, mesmerising onlookers with their charm.

The first time entered the cafe, I was expecting a bunch of bikers sitting inside, hogging onto burgers, chatting loudly and nursing their drying mouths with beer. But to my surprise I saw a family of 3 peacefully eating their meals with forks and spoons. Smile returned to my face the moment I noticed a helmet and a leather jacket on a nearby chair. Well, bikers have families too.

Currently, the place is getting a makeover or rather going through restoration. Sure enough, it's going to be my pit stop till I am in Bangalore .

The Coffee House ( MG Road )

In places like these, you realise what you really are. An insignificant dot in this overcrowded universe. And the prophets disguised as waiters, bring you face to face with the reality. After all, they are the people who bring you down from your ivory towers and treat you like an insignificant dot in this overcrowded universe. The logic is simple - they haven't called you in, you have come by your own will. So they will attend to you whenever they feel like. They operate, totally unaware of "Customer is the king" crap. And I can't tell how much I love such places. No matter who you are or what you are, they teat all with the same respect or the lack of it.

I immediately felt like I was sitting in Merwan or Caf� Mondegar. And I loved that feeling the moment it crept inside my soul. Their mysterious old world charm haunts me and makes me visit these two prehistoric monuments again and again. Everything in such places, including the outside signage, is as old as the place itself. The tables, glasses, cups, paint on the wall and occasionally even the waiters, sorry, the Prophets.

I met this gentleman called Kariappa who was proudly working in The Coffee House for the last 34 years. 34 whole years at one single place. He immediately joined the list of people whom I immensely respect other than myself. The place has been here for the last 51 years. The food is good and coffee is at its best. It should better be.

The Coffee House has a full glass window that provides a good outside view. Inside, there are a few ancient hand-painted posters hanging on the wall describing the greatness of coffee. The atmosphere was very relaxed and no one disturbed me, even when I needed help with my bill. One Prophet, however, at one point, kept hovering over my head. And the moment I shoved the last piece of bread in my mouth, he took away the Salt & Pepper bottles and banged them in front of some other dot. Now that's efficient service.

All in all it was a great experience. Thanks to the Prophets who helped me strike a dialogue with my inner self and realise that I, in true sense, was an insignificant dot in this already overcrowded universe.

Sherlock Holmes ( Cox Town , Coles Road )

Now this place truly lives by its name. To begin with, it�s so secretly located that you can barely spot it. Before walking in, I noticed they had a balcony, but couldn't find the way to reach there. May be there was some underground staircase starting under the cash counter that takes one to a secret lift and which then takes them to this hideout.

Once you enter inside you are greeted with two lounges and few tables here and there. But the reason why this place deserves to be in my list is something as unbelievable as a man who understood women.

As I was busy making sure Kingfisher workers get their salaries on time, I could hear some strange noise erupting out of speakers. When I inquired about it to another amused victim sitting next to me, he informed it was Kannada Rock. Holy fucking shit.What the hell on earth is Kannada Rock??? All the great rockers doping in heaven must be crying by now. Not allowing speakers to torture me any more, I gulped down my beer and walked out soon. And to my surprise, I easily found my way out.

To be continued...


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