The second day schedule was hectic and filled with places to shop. Delhi is a big city with unpredictable traffic, so going from one place to another can take a lot of time. We had only two days to tick our long list of good to buy at Delhi, so we started our day early. We had quick breakfast at the guest house and headed towards Lajpat Nagar, our shopping destination for the day.
We decided to take metro to go to Lajpat Nagar central market, it took us around one hour to get there. After we got down from metro, again we took rickshaw to go to the central market. But unlike Karol Bagh, Lajpat Nagar is huge. There were all kinds of small colorful shops in the central market displaying dupattas, shoes, bangles, kurtis, sarees and many more. We needed to buy a lot of sarees so were looking for one place to buy most of it. As we wandered from one alley no another, we couldn’t find a decent saree shop. It was hot and sunny that day and I started to get frustrated as I hadn’t even made a single purchase! We asked several local people there about good saree shops but we didn’t get a satisfactory answer. So, we changed direction and headed towards a big road instead of wandering in the alleys. There I saw a familiar name, it was one of the names I found on the internet, so we quickly went inside to see their collection. As we sat down to see what they had to show, we were not impressed by their collection at all. At this point, we were hungry and irritated. So, A and I both decided to take a break and go for lunch. It was past mid-day already and we had only bought one saree for A’s grandmom. But nevertheless, we needed a break from the hot Delhi day.
A had looked up a place to have lunch near Lajpat Nagar area over the internet. We wanted to have good lunch and rest for a while before we start looking for saree shops again. So, we went took an auto and went to nearby Defence Colony. At Defence Colony there were a lot of places to eat, but we wanted to go to the famous Colonel’s Kabab. The auto driver took us right at the door of Colonel’s Kabab. We were happy to have found the place with less effort :). As soon as we reached inside, we made our order. We ordered romali roti, my most favorite roti :), mutton kabab, mutton kakab roll, dal makhni, chicken dum biryani and jaljeera drink. The place was quite old and famous. There were pictures on the wall depicting its rich history and the decor was naturally antique. As the food arrived, Jaljeera was very good, the mutton kebab was not as good as expected, romali roti was soft but the best order was chicken dum biryani. All in all, we were satisfied with our lunch and we rested there for a while before we went out to find shops.
After lunch, we headed back to the central market and went to the same wide road to look for more saree shops. This time we found a decent shop and as we started looking for sarees, we noticed that they had fixed process of discount and hence we didn’t need to bargain a lot. At this place we bought most of our sarees and I’m quite satisfied with the purchases we made. It was already 7pm by the time we finished shopping. After this we went to the central market once again and A had the famous pani puri there. As I had throat infection, A didn’t let me eat those delicious pani purees :(, but he said they were the best he ever had, but I had the chance to eat the best chicken momo at Lajpat Nagar Central market, but it was not as good as the Nepali momo :). After that, we went to South Extension market. There again we bought few sarees and it was time for dinner. For dinner, we went to a Bengali vegetarian place, there we had masala dosa and it was yummm!!! We also had some bengoli sweets.
On the final day, we had very less time and a lot of things were still to be bought. At first we went to Karol Bagh to pick our sarees, we snacked on Dosa and Chole Bhature at the local South Indian joint, A said it was the best dosa he ever had. Then we went to South Ex. Mom had asked me to buy special silk saree for her, so we went to Nalli’s to buy silk saree for mom. It has the most serene color of warm pink with some beads work. Then we went to few other saree shops in South Ex. South Ex is more expensive but offers very good quality of authentic sarees, so we bought my wedding saree and reception saree at South Ex. The sarees in South Ex were simply gorgeous, they had the most amazing sarees but I had to stick to my budget and my agenda, so I asked the shopkeeper to show me the specific kind of sarees in my range. Delhi saree shops are very good at salesmanship, they make you feel like a princess asking you to try their most special pieces. I’ve bought few sarees only because it looked adorable when I tried them on.
After the hectic day of shopping, we had local pau bhaji, papri chaat and a glass of Mausambi(sweet lime) juice. Then we went back to Nirman Bihar. As we got down at the metro station, A wanted to try the chicken tandoori one more time before we left; so he bought some chicken and we ate it at the guest house.
But wait, our Delhi experience doesn’t end here. One thing we were discussing on our way to the airport was that we didn’t get much time to explore Delhi food culture. So, when we reached airport, we wanted to try the Indian food counter at the airport as well.We went to Curry Kitchen at the airport food court.
We enjoyed the local delhi food a lot.
I bought some sarees with sheer satisfaction, some because I needed to and some out of total urgency. It was a crazy shopping experience and pure indulgence :). I was happy and satisfied to have been able to spend like that on my own, it even made my parents proud. All in all Delhi was a good experience and if I get a chance, I’d like to go there again and visit neighboring cities like Agra and Jaipur.