The monsoons are not exactly a great time to venture out on foot in Mumbai. I maybe wrong in saying so but it might be because of my inexperience with ‘walking for errands’. In Nagpur, I had my precious two-wheeler to take me wherever I wanted to go, even if it was just a few meters away. But here, it is different. Public transport rules as the distances are longer. Better still if you travel by your own car and even better if you have a driver who willingly drives you where ever you want to go. I thank my lucky stars for that !
Yesterday, or perhaps the day before the monsoons finally reached Mumbai. Unlike every weekend which is usually spent walking aimlessly in a mall, this weekend we decided to head to Bandra. It was a bright morning and the sky was scattered with wisps of grey clouds casually hanging out, probably plotting a heavy downpour for the later part of the day. Since it was late for breakfast, we decided to skip it and instead of entering Suzette Creperie & cafe , we settled to fill our stomachs with Punjabi khaana at Papa Pancho ka dhaba. A menu check on a mobile app later revealed that we had missed out on some superb buckwheat crepes made the traditional Brittany way. There’s always a next time and next time I really hope is the coming weekend.
Getting a parking space in Bandra especially on a Sunday is not an easy task. We were quite fortunate to find one and everything we wanted to explore was just walking distance from there. Since grocery shopping is my first love (shopping for clothes comes a close second, normal right?), the first place I decided to check out was the Pali hill Farmer’s market. As I was getting ready to dive into the sea of veggies, the sun decided to take its day off and down came the rains. It wasn’t a heavy downpour but the pothole filled sludgy water made it difficult to walk and it was no fun playing ‘dodge water’ with the cars either. We passed from stall to stall eyeing the fresh greens and regretting buying our grocery at the mall the day before. We had to stop eventually when the roof of a stall attempted to soak us in its own reservoir of rain water.
My next destination was Sante’s , a delicatessen located just a few meters away from the market on the same road. This is where for the first time ever in Mumbai, I found Valrhona. My happiness was short-lived when I checked the price label (!) But this place is surely a haven for cheese enthusiasts. I didn’t get too adventures and stuck to my regular cheese buys : 100 g blocks of Mozzarella and Parmigiano reggiano. As we were about to make an exit, I spotted a plastic jar filled with vanilla beans. Now is the time to make your own vanilla extract, I thought to myself and bought a few beans priced at 60 Rs per bean. Some quick math (done by my husband, obviously) revealed that it was time to chuck the fake and pricey bottles of vanilla essence and replace them with natural vanillin. Sante’s also carries a big freezer full of frozen fruits : strawberries, raspberries, blueberries, red currants and many more. Since I had already bought cans of fruits soaked in syrup ( I know Fresh fruits > Frozen fruits >Canned fruits !) I wistfully let the freezer door shut. Barring a couple of rookie mistakes I was pretty satisfied with my loot !
My next stop was going to be Arife’s la moulde, a store selling baking supplies but being a Sunday it was closed.
Too bad I didn’t carry my camera on my way but here is a picture of my weekend purchase. I love the bright green cheese wrappers !
We did end the day watching a movie at a mall though