Childhood Memories and Not Knowing Where It’s Gone.

When I was growing up in Bombay, India it was not as developed as it is today. Does it compare to San Francisco (read any big city in an apparently first world country) absolutely not but we’re still better of than before. NO, no elephants roam the streets. Cows and bullocks neither, unless they are domesticated. And yeah we got wifi and Uber and Forever 21 and Ferragamo and Jimmy Choo. Just making my point.

Today, after six days of self imposed house arrest when I went on a walk, I saw a chana-sing-wala. Chana means horse gram, sing is peanuts and wala means of or who does the said task or keep the said things. So it means, a man who sells roasted peanuts and gram. These are local munchies. Been around for centuries. There are different varieties. Some plain salted. Some with a spicy masala. At times, the same bloke with have dried peas. Brought back childhood memories where after an evening at the park, the grandfather would treat us to this simple snack.

Somewhere in the last thirty years with moving to the US and back and being busy with PT school and other grown up stuff, I had long forgotten the pleasure of eating this straight from the vendor. I was super surprised to see one (usually they are there in fixed touristy spots but this one was just in my locality, something I have never seen before) and didn’t forego the chance of reliving the childhood pleasure.

I am going to share with you a snap I took of the chanasingwalas goods. I am assuming very few know what I am talking about (those who are Indians know and probably don’t know what the hullabaloo is all about) and hoping you enjoy the simplicity and joy just as much as I did. Anyhow, I finally, got the masala sing and chana dal and shelled out ₹20 for both. That’s when I got a shock of my life!! It used to be ₹2 when I used to get it. Made me realise, it’s been 25 years since that day. Damn, when did I grow up so much???!!!

Oh gosh, I just remembered how one of these guys had a unique way of selling it, bit can’t fit it all in this post so will be sure to make a sequel to this post later.


From left to right: tiny little brown bottle for masala, horse gram being kept warm with coal and wood, masala chana dal (fried dried gram), masala sing (peanuts), masala fried dried peas, plain dried peas with a lemon on top, sing (salted roasted peanuts). The thing you see in the paper cone are chopped onions!

If you ask, he will give you a mix of any of the above with chopped onions and lemon juice and an extra special masala, which is yum.

He carries all these in a metal tub which he straps on to himself making him walk like a woman pregnant with quintuplets.


15 thoughts on “Childhood Memories and Not Knowing Where It’s Gone.

  1. I would try that.
    I grew up in Colorado. after graduation of high school, my parents decided to move to Virginia. in the complex my parents lived in, the kids my age would gather at the pool during summer. I was asked where did I live and told them Colorado. they were all shocked of how could I leave a place where you rode horses all the time. well I had to break their bubble. I told them we all had indoor plumbing, drove cars places on paved roads, and only rode horses if we had them. also, we did not live with Indians or always skied to school. we had malls and movie theaters. and we did not walk around packing six shooters. they thought we lived in the old west!!! lol
    many have a BIG misconceptions of places. lol


  2. Hello, Nameless. …Forgive me, I like to get personal, in a good way. Even went to Your About page to try to find out Your name. Do put it there, somewhere, Please! 🙂

    To continue, about wondering where the Childhood days are gone, and being surprised that the chana that used to sell for Rs. 2 costs Rs. 20 now, I have the same experience. Only, many times multiplied, as I am nearing 70!

    You write interesting posts. Came to You via Rajiv Chopra! Another interesting person! …And You have a Very Beautiful Font going in Your site. Kudos on Your Choice.

    Love and Regards. 🙂


    1. Right, I understand but I like the anonymity a blog allows 🙂
      Thanks so much for stopping by and commenting. I really appreciate it.
      It’s wonderful that you are into blogging at 70. I’ve been trying to get my grandparents to learn how to type and use a basic (?)smartphone but I want to bang my head against the wall. But also they are nearly 85!! 😬

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Thank You! …I appreciate Your sentiments, but, at the same time, We ‘Oldies’ of the Blogging world form a little ‘Community’ of Our Own. Knowing Each other helps in that.

        As for blogging away at my age, at the moment I have 1,075 posts published, and 99 drafts, so WordPress tells me!

        Maybe that is because I am into Social Activity!

        As for using the Smart phone, I too fail in that, mainly because the ‘working area’ is too small for the finger tips. I use the PC for all this.

        Hearty Regards to You, and the Whole Family! 🙂


      2. Hello, Friend, Thanks, and, as You say, I have learnt Typing. Actually learnt this during my Seminary days, for which I am eternally Thankful.

        This is also proving to be a Great Boon to me, in that my handwriting was, and still is, So bad, that my Seminary professors used to tell me Not to Bother answering questions in the (written) exams, as they could not read it anyway!

        But I Totally Agree with Your Dear and Grand, in the sense of Wise and Great, Granny. THAT is how computers should behave!

        I would like to kick them, only, that would mean having to keep buying new units, which I can Ill afford!

        Hope I have not put You to sleep with all that talk!

        Regards, and to Your Grandparents too! 🙂


      3. Hahaha!!! My handwriting is beautiful. No I am up but still!! Didn’t write anything that would make me 😴😴😴
        Best regards to you too! I would like you to read my post Savitri. It’s an excerpt from the Sri Aurobindo epic!

        Liked by 1 person

      4. But that may be because that is my line of work these days. I used to be a Preacher, but the Good Lord has Changed my ministries!

        I have also taken some 30 months to come to this number! So, nothing special. 🙂


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