Sunday, June 11, 2006


Today's Vocabulary Words:

Hotel - restaurant
Lodge - hotel
Mess - low-end restaurant
Petrol Bunk - gas station

After seeing The Barbarian Invasions at the Raj Kamal (decrepit-looking theater with great sound) and doing some serious shopping and a little tailor-combat (never, ever trust someone who says, "I will bring you to my brother. He will stitch your dress, no problem."), Matrika and I dined on the roof of the very touristy Shipastri hotel in the city center. The last time I was there was with Bob on our first night in Mysore back in 2002; at that time every table was occupied and had a copy of Lonely Planet: South India on it. Many languages were repesented (the guides belonged to the people eating, not to the restaurant).

Maybe it's no longer listed because it was quite quiet. It was also quite dark but for the light of the full moon. The sun had amost set and the air was cool and millions of bats were flying west. Very pleasing. Afterwords we bought stickers on the street (Rs 4 each). My favorites were the Kannada actors (who tend to be portly and fair with moustaches and rather big hair) and Hanuman, Ganesh, Jesues, Sai Baba, et al superimposed over piles of rupees.

Today on the way to an island near KRS Dam I saw three female petrol bunk attendants. They wore red and blue salwaar kameez uniforms and matching baseball caps and stood like soldiers next to the pumps. They looked but would not smile back at me, so I didn't bother asking for a picture. So far though I have not seen the two female rickshaw drivers. I did, however, see one of the transvestite guys with overdone makeup and over-the-top sari, and steered clear. More on them later. And the interview with Sharath.

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