Sudden Influx into Chennai 22/08/2013

Ever since I came to live in  Madras in the mid sixties, I began missing two things which I was used to while in Jamshedpur. They  were meeting  Hindi  speaking people and  restaurants offering North Indian food. But through the years of my stay the lacuna was filled with my making friends  with North Indians settled here and with the mushrooming of several eat outs where  the stuff is available. However, unlike in the North where hot phulkas constitute a necessary part of a meal  in a restaurant, none of the restaurants/hotels with the exception perhaps of  Mansukh  in Chennai  have them on their menu for whatever reason.

Strangely there has been a sudden  influx of waiters from places like Orissa and Manipur working in restaurants like Woodlands and Mathura. With their fair complexion and good looks  one  can easily mistake them as someone hailing from the  temple town Udupi  until   you hear them  talking   in Tamil  with their  distinct  native accent! Remembering my early days in Madras I tried to make conversation with them in Hindi thinking they would feel happy but was amused to find them reply in Tamil and also feel proud of their knowledge of the local language!

n.meera raghavendra rao


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