Day 2 of our sightseeing was a spot of retail therapy in Pune. I wanted to show my parents a popular shopping area called Mahatma Gandhi (MG) Road or Main Street where they have everything from small independent sellers to Reebok and The United Colors of Benetton. It’s a 15 minute auto rickshaw ride away and we arrived just after 1pm. Unfortunately we were a bit early for most of the shops, here, they tend to open up in the morning, close for a few hours at lunch and then open up again in the afternoon. We did have a walk up and down the street though and looked at all the old buildings with their closed shops hidden behind old rickety wooden shutters.
|A small side street off MG Road|
|Shops hidden behind shutters|
Just around the corner from MG Road is a mall called SGS mall where there are more well known shops such as The Body Shop, Esprit and, wait for it.... Marks and Spencer! (My mum wasn’t too happy to see the top she’d just bought in the UK £10 cheaper in there!) There is also a large food court where you can get a Subway, Pizza Hut, McDonalds as well as popular North Indian cuisine.
|Food court downstairs|
|The sign says it all!|
The first time I went to this mall on my own, I was eating in the food court when I spotted a few security guards marching around the place with huge shot guns! It was a bit shocking to see but that’s one thing you have to get used to over here, they are hot on security. You see lots of security guards outside ATM’s, malls and hanging around behind sandbag forts outside IT complexes all holding big guns. Thankfully I've not seen anyone use one yet; I think it’s mainly just for show and used as a deterrent.
Anyway back to day 2: After we’d been thoroughly shopped out, we went out for a typical Indian meal. No, it wasn't a curry like you’d instantly assume, it was a Sizzler! A sizzler is basically a massive meal consisting of rice, chips, vegetables, meat or a vegetarian option covered in lots of sauce, be it cheese, tomato or some kind of gravy; all on a sizzling hot plate that spits fiery hot fat all over your face, arms and lap! They are a very popular dish over here; nearly every other restaurant sells them. They are probably a heart attack on a plate but still extremely delicious!
|Massive plate of food!|
My parents both looked a bit overwhelmed by the size at first but they both tackled it with vigour and wiped their plates clean!
I think that we all ate way too much, I could hardly move on the way home! It’s a good job our apartment is just across the road from the restaurant!