Category Archives: Explore Bangalore- My Bengaluru

You gotcha be dressed for all seasons in Bangalore

Everyone seems to have the forced opportunity to be dressed for summer, winter and rains in May and June in Bangalore.

2015 has seen dramatic change in weather in this overpopulated growing city. Nothing new, as climate is bound to change over the years, right?

But this time, looks like God is quite keen on making us utilize our wardrobe essentials on all days.

You step out in the morning thinking it is a sunny or rainy day and you are greeted with a makeover weather change in the next half an hour. If you have kids who need to be ferried around the city for school, tuitions or anything extra curricular, then hopefully, the same God should help you. It is not easy either to convince your child to wear layered clothing or carry around a jacket, cap, raincoat or a sleeveless tee.

You don’t know which ones you would need by the time you reach home.

With Bangalore gradually embracing the fashion culture and keeping itself upbeat with other upscale cities, the weather seems to be in full mood to make us utilise our wardrobe well.

No wonder, everyother day, we see a new fashion portal or an app being launched in the city to test the waters. After all bengaluru is making people be on their toes in dressing up.








In the midst of conversion

It is Christmas celebrations everywhere in Bangalore with streamers, colourful lights, bells, stars lined up in stores waiting to be bought and decorated in home. On the other hand, the national headlines seem to indicate the row on conversions from one religion to another, tagging along the christmas date of bringing forgotten hindus back to Hinduism.

When I have put up a Christmas tree and a star and of course decor related to x’mas celebrations this 2014, my little one is most excited with me to imagine and hope that Santa will come to our home and give us some goodies along with blessings.

As much as I decorated and relished traditional delicacies whether it was for other festivals like onam, diwali or for christmas, it is the openness of these festivals that makes people like me to enjoy these festivities and relish some fun moments at home.

Religion and practicing a particular faith is purely a personal matter, according to me I hope people will understand that celebrating a festival or practicing a particular religion doesn’t make them or strip them of their identity of who they really are.

Eight things to know to be safe and enjoy, when in Bangalore

This city welcomes all. However, if you know some of these tips beforehand, your stay in Bangalore will become enjoyable!

Here are a few things listed from a Bangalorean for a first-time visitor to namma Bengaluru.

Bangalore is the capital city of Karnataka state in South India. Kannada is the local language spoken in the city though in the current times, most are well-versed with English and Hindi. There are a huge number who speak Tamil, Telugu and other Indian languages even though it is not their native language. Similarly there are migrants to this city who are from various parts of India.

The city has established itself undoubtedly as a cosmopolitan city that offers the glimpse of the country, with its ability to welcome and live with members from any part of the globe.

The following are the ten things that I can put down as a first-hand guide for a visitor who is new to the city.

1. Masala Dosa: Bangalore is also known as Bengaluru. Make sure you eat a masala dosa at a darshini in the city. Darshinis are the hotspots of breakfast eat outs that almost run through the day. The ones that have people swarming at the eatery will surely have a good masala dosa. Popular ones are Vidyarthi Bhavan, Adigas, MTR and Maiyyas.

When it comes to eateries and cuisines, Bangalore has welcomed various cuisines. If you are fine trying a rice dish, then try out a Puliogere or a Bisibelebath. Also if possible take time to have an authentic and grand Karnataka lunch. Good options are at MTR, Pai comforts at JP nagar to name a few. And last but not the least while you may otherwise enjoy cappuccinos and black teas; try a filter coffee –light at any darshini.

2. Heavenly climate: Bangalore has a unique climate. The season though is divided between summer, winter, spring and rains; it is not uncommon to find cool and pleasant weather in the mornings and scorching heat in the afternoons. It is again not a rare sight to find a heavy rainy shower in some streets during the rainy season of July-September to have some streets which may be just few yards away a bare dry weather.

3. Silk sarees: When in Bangalore, make sure you visit a good saree store to buy a saree for a loved one. A reasonable good saree ranges between Rs, 1000/- to 10,000/-. The range can go higher too if you want to buy. A few popular stores are Vijaylakshmi, Prasiddhi, Deepam, Nalli, Soch. Alternatively you can buy a khadi kurta at Desi, Fab India stores and Grameen Angadi at JP Nagar.

3. Feast for a thiest: Bangalore has quite a few scenic temples. If you can make time then do visit Bull Temple at Basavanagudi, Rajrajeshwari temple (for its intricate work), Iskon temple (a temple that has a modern touch to it) and Venkateshwara temple at Banashankari.

It is recommended that you dress conservatively when visiting a temple. You can wear trousers and tops but shorts and short skirts are not welcomed at the holy shrines in Bangalore. And yes dressing full covered clothes would save you unwanted stares.

4. Parks: Bangalore is home to a few gardens. For a stroll you can visit Lalbagh. Cubbon Park is more of a tree park, on the face of it, it does not appear safe for a visitor, however the places near to police station or Chinnaswamy stadium are widely used by people.

5. Malls: Bangalore has quite a few malls in various parts of the city. Phoenix Market city at Whitefield, Mantri Mall at Malleshwaram, Orion Mall in Rajajinagar and Forum mall at Koramangala are th epopular ones, while there are other malls too.

6. Heartwarming performaces: The city has a great patronage for Indian art forms. Almost every single week there are Bharatnatyam performances to classical Indian music shows. Some are conducted at temples, others at specific venues for performing arts. Look in an English daily supplement to find out on the performances in the city. You can attend a few for free too.

Bangalore has a vibrant theatre scene. Right from English plays to French and German and Kannada performances, the city has numerous shows every single day. You will have to plan a bit in advance, if you want to attend a theatre perofmance. Good plays are regularly staged at Jagriti at Whitefield, Ravindra Kalakshetra at the heart ofthe city, K H Kalasoudha at Hanumantha Nagar, Alliance Francaise in Vasanth Nagar, Rangashankara at JP Nagar and Chowdiah Memorial hall in Malleshwaram.

7. Restaurants and pubs: Bangalore has a midnight deadline in restaurants, while pubs will close at 9.30 pm. Be a little careful about auto rickshaw drivers, or even cab drivers. It is advisable that you have a friend who knows the local language/any Indian language when travelling in the city, if you do not know the city. Most auto rickshaw drivers will understand English. You can check your location and destination beforehand with GPS, and have a safety-app enabled mobile with you. You can also take a pre-booked auto if you inevitably have to travel alone in an auto. Bangalore is known for being home to good pubs. A few good ones are Hard Rock café, a few at UB city and around MG road.

8. A foodie’s delight: Bangalore, due to its mixed population, is home to various inter-state and international cuisines. So if you are missing your home food then you can be assured of finding one restaurant at least that will offer Bengali, Gujrathi, Punjabi, Rajasthani, Andhra, Kerala, Mexican, Thai, Chinese and the Pizza chains. Oh yes, there are scores of KFC chains, Subways and McDonalds in the city.

Do remember that is there much more to explore in Bangalore but I hope this would be of use to people who want to get a taste of the city when they are here for a brief visit.

By Reshma Krishnamurthy Sharma

Reshma Krishnamurthy Sharma lives in Bangalore and loves reading and writing on society and changing lifestyles

As published on Citizen Matters online edition on September 13th 2014

Onam in Bangalore -2014

As I read an article this morning in the Hindu on more and more people knowing about an important festival from Kerala, I have begun to nod my head in complete agreement- it is indeed a pleasant surprise.

Nothing surprising, that Bangaloreans are open to new cultures, but this year Onam spirit is surely high enough seen on friday-sat-over the sunday.

Have been noticing that people and since yesterday, particularly college students are dressed in the real Kerala saree, the golden and cream combination. Even corporates are having their employees dressed in onam related outfits. I remember two years ago, as I was working for a firm that had lot of people who wanted to celebrate, I took the initiative and we had onam rangoli competitions.

Employees dressed in the way Keralites dress during festive occasions and excitedly I too purchased a saree for myself. Of course I do wear it once in a while.

Women regardless of belonging to Kerala or not are celebrating with complete ‘josh’ this time in Bangalore and this time as Onam falls on a Sunday, September 7th.

Another noticeable trend this time people wanting to feast on Onam sadhya -supposedly made by the people who celebrate. This time a lot of restaurants are advertising well in advance for people to come and have the elaborate meal.

All in all, as long as happy times and smiling faces are around I guess Bangoreans get into the spirit of celebrating many other festivals and occassions. Soon it will be Dandiya time. For now it is happy onam.

Is it so difficult for men to control their urges and needs

It was a year ago when I was working for a project for a company when one of my colleagues told me that he was disturbed by the rape of a young girl, as reported in the newspaper that morning. I said I do agree on it and it’s time people reacted. Then he told me something for which I became speechless for a while. He mentioned that India has a major gender disparity and we have more boys being born than girls.

Yes I nodded my head and then I get to hear from him, ” what do you think will happen when men have to remove their sexual urges when there are not enough women”? I just stared and stared until he left for some other task to be done.

I have never heard of any woman saying she cannot hold her sexual urge and she feels like raping any man. So how is it a problem for men?

Even otherwise, I do feel  sex has become such an overrated subject. I hope younger and all the pervert men understand, women are not beauty entities who are born to please you. Ask any elderly person in the city they are saddened by the developments the city has attained and many feel technology, digital devices and unwanted videos has unnecessarily fueled the devil’s mind.

On a another note, roam in any city in India, including Bangalore, I feel ashamed to say this that there are countless men who stand to urinate openly to any wall they feel comfortable.  Women on the other hand are taught from young to control her needs, urges and she cannot sit and urinate wherever she feels. Happy to say she does not indulge in defecating the city.

But who will explain this to men, that it is not acceptable to watch any man’s back and turn your head because he is urinating openly to some wall of a building or a home. or even an empty land.  Even young school-going kids are encouraged to do this by their moms mind you -I am talking of boys here. Girls are not allowed this liberty -you see.

Controlling our urges is not difficult and particularly viewing another woman, child, man for your sexual release is not done, will not be tolerated. I hope Bangalore soon sheds this tag of rape city to happy and free space city that has happy and sensible caring  individuals. 


Bull temple in Bangalore

Bull temple-basavanagudiThe entire neighbourhoud in this part of old Bangalore has a certain charm to it. One of the prominent locations for visitors including International visitors who can afford to have a little time and interest on a historical temple is the Bull temple. I remember, literally over a decade ago when I was a trainee PR executive in a firm, my role on a particular assignment was to take a few international media personnel from Thailand to this temple as part of their sight-seeing tour of Bangalore. The guide who was taking the personnel had a lot of unwanted information to share and if anything was exaggerate, I would be smiling to myself as to why do generally guides presented a kind of distorted image of Bangalore. But then that was years ago and I too had fun taking those journalists around the city. Cut to 2014, thanks to internet, reviews, traveller feedback, one can no longer present a different picture of tourist spots than what it is in reality. This particular temple Dodda Basavanna devasthana or Bull temple has a lot of visitors, right through the year. There is an open air path that leads to the Nandi statue and is allowed to be photographed. This temple is adjoining to the other temples in the complex that has the famous Ganesha temple and Lord Shiva temple too. But it is the Nandi statue that attracts a lot of tourists. The idol of Nandi is supposed to be carved out of a single rock. A mythological tale says that the bull temple was built to appease a bull that would consume and destroy all the groundnuts and peanuts cultivated in this area. It is also said that after the temple was built, the bull stopped damaging the crop. As a celebration of this incident, the farmers of Basavanagudi organized a Groundnut fair (Kadalekai Parase), near the temple. This festival is continued even to this date and is organized in Bangalore every year. Most Bangaloreans who live near South Bangalore find this an opportunity to just visit once this festival as part of celebrations of Bangalore’s festivals. Will be soon sharing a few pictures taken at the Bull temple a fortnight ago.