Streetlit Bangalore Series.
Even though these pictures were shot in the evening, it's life here in the mornings that I'm most familar with.
Earlier, I used to run around this park every morning. And mornings here can be full of life. The entertainment comes from observing the whole cross section of society moving at various speeds around the park and the surrounding tree-lined streets, just like traffic on Indian roads. Some move like loaded lorries, others like bullock carts. There are the flashy, adrenaline filled youngsters zipping by, gawkers like me and stray dogs.
Most people exercise in groups. It allows them to gossip and catch-up with all the happenings in the neighbourhood.
The most talked about topic is politics. Real estate comes next. And in this part of Benglur with its population of politicians/land grabbers, you can get juicy gossip about everybody including its most famous part-time resident, the Chief Minister himself.
The older women talk about their daughter-in-laws and the local ghar ghar k kahaniyan. The expats talk about dogs. The Persians don't walk their dogs, they follow their dogs on a scooter or bike. The kids come to play. There are girls and boys who work in garment factories who come to meet their lovers before the early morning shift. There's a juice walla who sells Bitter Gourd juice. There's a Kannada film heroine from the 80s and her gang of friends and there are women who exercise in bhurkas. There is a retired Government Employee who goes around distributing or sticking posters asking people to join his 'Gandhigiri' initiative. There are men who make strange noises when they flap their hands like a crow having a bath. And there are gangs of naughty old men who block the road if they see a car or vehicle speeding down a road before 8am.
These days, the parks are open until 8.30pm to allow people to spend some time exercising and with friends after they come back from work. And they open at 5.30am.