Regardless of how many malls come up, shopping at the exhibition still rules.
Here is a great way to test one’s ability to focus even in utter chaos. Just spend an evening at Numaish, Hyderabad’s very own exhibition. If you are brave enough, you can venture out on weekends. We witness this annual fete every year and yet it has not lost its charm. I set out this week to get a personal experience. Once I got off my car, I did not have to walk. The crowd walked me to the gate. And we are talking of Monday here, when the crowd was around 30,000. “The numbers swell to 78,000 on Sunday and on weekdays, it’s 35,000 visitors,” said a friendly traffic cop.
Now that is true city spirit. Just to think that despite our festivals, celebrating, shopping and numerous other sales, so many still have the time and stamina to walk through the mad rush and actually haggle, buy, eat and pack some home. One’s got to have a tremendous zest for life to be able to have fun here.
There were women, men, kids, old and young and it was sheer amusement watching them asking for various permutations and combinations at clothes stalls. The shopkeepers to pulled out each garment patiently as the shoppers bargained away. From a showroom full of beautiful girls showing off home appliances to sweet corn in five flavors, every bit was engaging. It is difficult to imagine people buying rice cookers at a place like this, but there were some buying even mixers and grinders, with the sales people explaining everything in detail amidst the din. In case you have not yet visited Numaish, it’s on for just two more weeks.
I bumped into Pavan Charan, a playback singer and performer who you would least expect to see there. “Coming here brings back childhood memories. I just finished a recording and decided to check out the atmosphere”, he says. Along with him was Anu, a designer who runs a block printing unit in Hyderabad. For her it was to check out new designs and styles. For me personally, it started off as an objective observation thing but within minutes, I got engrossed looking at the glitter around. I love you Hyderabad for being you and letting me be me.
(The writer is a popular TV show host, radio jockey, professional singer… and most importantly, a hardcore Hyderabadi)