I recently visited Viayawada, Andhra Pradesh on an invitation from Novotel Vijayawada Varun Hotel. A trip to the Chili Market was on my itinerary and I am glad I went.
Even though the distance between Viaywada and Guntur is 38 kilometers it didn’t take us too long to reach there. At first glance the Guntur Chilli Market looks like a long row of tin sheds full of gunny bags! I must have missed the morning rush when most of the trade happens. The market was relatively quiet in the afternoon.
The pungent spicy smell of chilli was hanging in the air. I was looking for a lot of red in my pictures. Our initial round of the market yielded more gunny bags and trucks. I learned that Teja is the most famous brand in the market.
Then we came across a small patch of red chilies spread on the ground. I got out of the hotel car to click a few pictures. However, it was the smell that got to me! I sneezed and coughed for a while but I continued taking pictures.
I walked around a little only to find more gunny bags! I turned back to the car and we started driving out till we found my magical spot!
Don’t get me wrong, I do wonder how in the world the women manage to sort chillis with such good grace but the greedy photographer in me wanted those pictures. The ladies did ask me is I spoke any Telugu which I unfortunately do not.
Finding the way to the market was easy with Google Maps. At the gate they let our car go in. And needless to say we were the only tourists in the whole market! I so love going to off beat places and Guntur Chilli Market is one heck of an off beat place!
Stone grinders have gone out of fashion in urban India. But when I was growing up we had both sil batta (on the right in the photo) and chakki (the round one on the left) at my home!
This is what was used to grind pulses (using the round one called chakki), masala (spices) and chatni in Indian homes before mixers and grinders became common. So when I saw them at Lakshman Sagar I had to click a picture.
April has not been great travel wise. But it looks like I will after all go to Chandigarh for work. Hope May will be a different month travel wise. So for a few more days I will have to manage with pictures rather than travel tales.