Archive for September, 2008

Painted Pumpkins and the like

In my post “Painted Houses at Chennai” moyra commented “I am hoping someone could please explain to me about the effigy hanging in the last of three pictures” The picture referred to has an effigy tied  to a new building under construction at Velachery.

I thought I would do a post on this subject of painted pumpkins and the like. (more…)

Mamallapuram Guest House

This is the Mamallapuram Guest House inaugurated by erstwhile CM of Madras Mr K Kamaraj 51 years ago and was under the ITDC Management subsequently. Taken over later by the GRT group and rechristened as GRT Temple bay.

Welcome to the National Salon 2008

The Photographic Society of Madras will commemorate its 150th anniversary with an exhibition of photographs to be held from September 17th to 21, 2008 at Lalit Kala Academy, Greames Road, Chennai.

Painted Houses at Chennai

This is a house in a residential colony at Velachery in Chennai. What is striking about the image is the paint – fluorescent paint – in ghastly colours. This is a recent trend observed in different parts of the city. These colours are not so pleasant to eyes. Yet there could be reasons why people go for such paints. In some apartments, only the frontage is painted with such colours. Some sources say it has got to do with Vaastu.

Vaastu is considered significant in India as it is an ancient science on the use and correctness of the space. A friend tells me that such fluorescent paints are sold as Vaastu paints by paint companies to dispose of their not so fast moving shades. The second image is that of a mansion at Triplicane ( bachelor’s quarters in Triplicane area are called mansions).

The third image is a shopping complex coming up at Taramani Road which houses Peter England showroom in the ground and first floor. The frontage painted with fluorescent shade paint.

A search in google with “Vaastu – Colours” throws some 55,800 entries. One such site www.http://www.sereneinteriors.com/colors-and-vastu.html  correlates colours with Zodiac signs as below :

Zodiac sign Colors suggested
Aries                            Coral red
Taurus                         Milky white
Gemini                         Green
Cancer                         Rose red, pearl white
Leo                              Ruby red, dim white
Virgo                           Emerald green
Libra                            Cement color, milky white
Scorpio                        Pink, coral red
Sagittarius                   Golden yellow
Capricorn                     Dim red
Aquarius                      Pink, blue
Pisces                          Yellow, pure white

The same site also bring out the colors compatible with the directions.

It is common belief in this part of the world that certain colours are lucky, brings good fortune and certain colours bring ill luck. The marriage invitations are still printed in yellow colour and obituaries are bordered in black.

But why this sudden craze for fluorescent shades ?

Could it be true that paint companies are selling their slow moving shades by calling them Vaastu Paints ?

Namma Chennai @ 2.50 AM

Route Tidel Park, Taramani to Valasarawakkam; Distance around 16 kms

This is a random post on what I observed in Chennai while riding back home after a tired day/night at 2.50 am in the morning.

Security at Tidel Park – There are night security guards everywhere, little relaxed compared to the day shift ones, but still gives a feel of being safe and secure.

Speed – Crazy speeds, by the half asleep cab drivers who shuttle the techies from office to their homes. Be very careful when you drive in the OMR, people drive here at crazy speeds at night. Wish they installed speed camera or monitors here.

Vehicles on road – Office cabs and high speeding Lorries mostly.

Street Lights – Lit all the way. Good improvement compared to how it was a few years back.

Dogs – Saw almost around 50 dogs all through the route – all awake, wonder when they really sleep. Thankfully none barked at me.

Police Patrol – Found one patrol car next to my flat, around 4-5 cops talking to someone. Wonder if that was a case or a normal beat. I would still say Chennai is a safe city and Police here are very efficient.
I even saw quite a few patrol vehicles with policemen giving some instructions over loud speakers at 12 in the night from their cars.

Signals – Amber all the way

Petrol station – Around 6 petrol stations in this route, but all were closed, except the one before Ashok Nagar.
Don’t ever forget to fill fuel in your vehicle earlier itself if you plan to travel somewhere late in the night or early in the morning.

Road Laying – Happening right now near the Bridge after Saidapet bus stand. It happens only at late nights and early morning.

People – Some people were randomly walking, Saw a few construction workers/labourers returning home, wonder what took them so late to reach home. Techies in cabs.

Tea shops / eateries– Unfortunately I didn’t find anything open at this hour.

Public transport Buses – Didn’t see any, except a few empty ones which i presume are going to the bus depot to be parked there, but I have heard there are a few night services, wonder where I can get more details about them.

Out Station buses – Saw a few buses leaving Chennai via Ashok Nagar, one SETC bus to Bangalore, None going towards Koyambedu bus stand though. Think after 4am the buses start entering Chennai.

Apartment watchman – Fast Asleep, honked twice to wake him up, consolation was – nearby flat’s watchmen were awake.

So what did you observe in Chennai at these un-even hours?

Ps- This post is not an informative one, but just an observation on how things are and look like at early hours in Chennai

Lesser known food joints in Chennai – Mattas

It’s right there and even then i am sure you will miss the place. No it’s not a place where you can take your date for a nice dinner and no it’s not a place for all the health freaks out there but we can tell you it’s a awesome place with yummy food where you can go with your friends and have a great snack right by the road!!!

Mattas is your friendly neighborhood eat-out/fast-food located in Ashok Nagar. There are just 4 tables inside and it gets really cramped but you could just sit outside on plastic stools.

It’s a totally VEG fast-food and trust me there are some interesting choices there!

We start off with the usual tomato soup which is pretty ok and ordered some Veg Balls – the veg balls are really good, though a little less oil can do wonders, but it’s nice and crunchy on the outside and tastes awesome. The portions they give are good.

Our favorite is the chilly Gobi rice. It’s basically fried with gobi in it and it’s nice and spicy and the portions are really filling mind you.

The chilly mushroom here is awesome too. Its deep fried pieces of mushroom and you really wouldn’t believe some one could make mushrooms like this. You have limited choices and the menu is basically displayed on a board – chilly gobi, panneer and usual other vegetarian dishes you would find anywhere else and trust me the food is neat – they serve on steel plates with a banana leaf on top. I wouldn’t recommend the water they serve you there though.

All in all a good place to catch a quick bite before you head home to some good sleep after work.

Prasad my friend who agreed to review this place with me, has been going to this joint for the last 8 years now and agrees the taste has not changed a bit; though the prices have gone up a wee bit – come on inflation is catching up folks!

A quick dinner for two would set you back anywhere between Rs.100 to Rs.150

Ps – Will update later with the address and photos.

Bharathi, the Mahakavi

Today we remember the great Mahakavi on his 87th death anniversary and pay tributes for the freedom fighter.


the above is a collage of his home where he lived in triplicane & the plaque installed by the TN govt.

Check out more about Bharathi and his works here in the site hosted by the TN Govt.

Comedy Thirai

Yes, Suntv is coming up with a 24hr channel for tamil comedy explicitly. When Kalaingar TV was started there was lot’s of disputes and media war like airing the latest tamil flicks on weekends and festival occasions. Now, having lost the battle to Kalaingar TV, Suntv has started airing this kind of channel.

They have been showcasing most (almost all) of the comedies scenes during late hours for a quite long time.
It was called “comedy time”. This program was a huge success in Surya TV than Sun but as they are all are one group they started the copy cat methodology to bring it a success in Tamil but no use!. They didn’t perform or market their program so they lost their TRP.

But will this be a big click or flop depends on you(people). The channel takes it’s first steps on Sep 8th onwards. Let us wait and watch how it strives the media war and continue to bring up their TRP(Television Rating Point).

Lesser known food joints in Chennai – Mithai Mandir

When your wallet dons you, and yet you want to don your taste buds, then the right place for you would be – “Mithai Mandir”

Located near the Vadapalani temple, this place is easy to find. Looking at it from outside, it would not really impress you.

Mithai Mandir Entrance

Mithai Mandir Entrance

Enter the place and it’s a small restaurant, which has 2 floors. The ground floor can seat 24 people while the 1st floor can seat about 36 people. The entire restaurant is Air conditioned. The smell of traditional Rajasthani cuisines soon starts to tickle your nostrils once you start ordering your food, making you all the more hungry. The service is reasonably quick here.

Dhokla is one of best we can find in Chennai. I still don’t know how they manage to make such soft dhoklas. They also have a big Kachori’s, which is certainly BIG! (Way bigger than you normally can imagine a kachori to be)

The restaurant which specializes in Rajasthani and Gujarathi food, serve authentic thalis for Rs.55 and Rs.65 respectively. They also have Chaat items, 12 varieties of sweets, Combo meals, rice variety, Raithas and a wonderful variety of stuffed parathas. The Cheese Paneer paratha is a must try. For the Oh-I-am-Diet-conscious or Oh-gosh-not-that-oily-stuff people, you can try their wonderful phulkas, and I can bet you cannot find one as soft as these along with their dal to go.

And finally their desserts – mm you should try the Badam Milk. Oh my!! Just like a Good ‘ol wine to a palatable dinner. Or maybe even the Malai lassi.

They also have variety of snacks and namkeen, and while you leave – you can choose and pack some traditionally made khakhras, which is a must buy here.

Snack Counter

Snack Counter

Mithai Mandir is located at 17, Palani Andavar Koil Street, Vadapalani and is a place one must visit to taste the traditional Gujarathi or Rajasthani food.

Oye Guru!! What are you waiting for …??? Go there sometime and do some real hogging!

Special thanks to Harish, one of my friends who agreed to review this restaurant, happens to be a great fan of this place and is the one who introduced me to Mithai Mandir a few years back and since then we religiously go to this restaurant minimum twice a month.

Trivia – The owner of Mansukh (T.Nagar) and this place are related to each other.

Major fire in Saravana Stores, Ranganathan Street, T.nagar

Sep 1st was good to many as salary got credited and it’s a day when everyone who get’s paid for their hard end money. But things din’t go well for T.Nagar giant “Saravana Stores”. This morning was usal business for Ranganathan St but then suddenly people and workers in Saravana stores started screaming and running for the lives at 9.00AM as there was a major fire break inside the store.  Fire service was informed immediately and swiftly make it to the begning of the steet. They could not enter the street as it was too narro and top of it the newly constructed bridge has been a major barricate and restricted the movemts inside the street. Some saw that there are three people struck inside the building and they are trying to get them out. This horrifying incident is captures live in media channels like Jaya and Sun and shown live.

I saw the news scroll in Jaya tv at 9.00Am today and also huge gusted flames to a height of 100 ft on air. Which everyone who are around 1-4 kms away can see. I saw the dark smoke on my way to office at Saidapet bridge. I couldn’t take any pics as there was huge traffic.  One of my uncle is working for Metro waters near T.nagar and he was asked to supply 10-12 lorries of water tanker lorries for rescue. Since there are lots of plastic stuff inside the shop it’s been heard that the fire is caught on other shops aswell. I hope everybody makes their way safe and sound and there shouldn’t be casualities. As of now, the cause for the fire is a short circuit on the switches.

FYi, I heard that after the departure of the legendry owner there are lots of disputed in the family and they have split.

Latest: It is been told that nearly 20 people have got trapped inside the building

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.