Fire is indeed an enigma. In school I was told, it was invented by our forefathers to keep warm during cold winter nights or to cook the meat they had caught, but all that fire had given me was neither warmth nor nourishment. Instead it consumed my wife and my one year old son, his little feet just learning to tread the dusty ground.

They say never run away from fear but look it in its eyes and stand firm, but how could I. With no support and now with no home, I had to run. Escape from the misery that had befallen me. The journey albeit tiring had to be done. With my knapsack and few rupees I left Jaipur, the Pink city for Bombay, the city of dreams.

Having reached the highway, I waited, noticing the Volvo buses reversing in order to line up neatly in rows whereas the trucks haphazardly parked themselves wherever they felt like. Truck-walas do most of their travel by night after a stop at the local dhabas. A free ride is all I could really afford now.

As night approached, the dhabas sprung to life. The Chingi/ Nepalis who themselves had left their hometowns in search of greener money soon found themselves serving customers with Gobi Manchuri and chicken kababs. I feel sorry for them. The fire works up a sweat as they stir and flip the oily contents into the soya smoked air. Atlast as they masterpiece is ready, its poured into a rag cleaned plate and presented to the customers delight.

But dont be fooled, the best food in India is found always at the roadside and not in those posh restaurants which on tv they show under serving their guests. I've never realised why people pay hundreds of rupees to end up with a slice of meat and few boiled vegetables thrown the side.

Here with 25 rupees, a sumptuous meal of gobi or noodles with tomato and chilli sauce can be enjoyed under the lampost with the breeze gently cooling the piping hot food. I helped myself to some Gobi manchuri for this happened to be my last meal in the pink city.

All the dhabas have interesting names. Either its named after their wives or daughters or sons. Some have an almost blood relation to China and its ethereal dragon. But here at Pinky's Dhaba, supposidely the best among the lot so the guy claimed, I met Neelesh...

2 comebacks:

Anonymous said...

Yeah China Hut, Yeah China Hut, Yeah China Hut. What would we do without it? :D

Djarabia said...

yeah but china hut is a dhaba on wheels.. here i meant the real deal.. :)


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