Usman Road and my Mother-in-Law

When we were in Chennai a couple of weeks back, we happened to go to Usman Road, T.Nagar and Krishnan and I both remembered my mother-in-law’s liking for “Thirattu Paal”  from the Gomathi Shankar sweet shop. Amma would eat very little of it but Krishnan would polish it off :).

My introduction to Usman Road was by my mother-in-law. She would buy her sarees from the Kumaran Stores for whom she was the first ever customer. She got me hooked to Kumaran Stores and till I discovered Cooptex, I practically bought every single saree from Kumaran. She had a favourite place to get fresh juice. Then the corner stores selling flowers and fresh fruits. She would buy some towels from the push cart vendor in front of Kumaran stores.

Usman Road is also special to me because I shopped for my bindis from here just a day before meeting Krishnan in 1990. I again bought my “lambi” bindi or tilakams from one of the many roadside stores this time too.

So when we found ourselves near the Siva Vishnu temple, we immediately went to the Gomathi Shankar store there. Its a tiny kiosk really and they have opened a bigger store in Natesan street, just a few metres away. The “Thirattu pal” was all gone by the time we reached the store. Apparently their stocks vanish by 2 pm. We bought some “Sonpapdi” for memory’s sake. Then near the Kumaran Stores I got a picture of the juice stall but there was construction happening all around, so am not so sure, if it is the Luxmi softy stall or something next to it, which was all broken down. We bought a few pieces of Jackfruit from the folks selling fresh fruit in the curve after Kumaran stores.

Gomathi Shankar Bhavan – the sweet shop
Am not sure if this is the juice store or the one next to it which is all broken down now.

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