The blazing summer sun did nothing to deter shoppers and quite a few shutterbugs from coming to the Sunday Soul Sante at Palace Grounds. A mid-noon to midnight affair it is an urban flea market (yup, the price tags are a lot higher). Gaily strung colour paper and colourful tents with even more colourful thingamajigs, shaved ice with a squeeze of flavoured syrup, long whiskered puppies with mournful eyes and ‘adopt me’ bandannas – the santé sweeps you in before you know it.

pic credit: sunday soul sante page on facebook

A desk with a pile of coins glinting in the sun greeted visitors paying the entry fee of Rs 49 (why not just round it off to 50 asked a woman). Once stamped you could lose yourself in the lines of tents, leaving a mini-sandstorm in your wake, dashing from one to the other, restless.

The places had quirky names that made you want to take a peek and more. Try this for size – Pig Out (Coorg food… for all those who have never savoured pandhi curry…yum!!!), Pigtails & Pony, scatterthebatter, artisense, inkmesilly, mowlya (move on with your life and), and on it goes. Unwrap India had a lovely sunny wooden trunk with dreams of Paris painted on it and it was predictably sold out (sigh!). The hat stand was another winner. Feathers seemed to be the flavour of the season. They were everywhere!

pic credit: sunday soul sante page on facebook

Photographers had a field day, looking like they had chanced upon a pirate’s treasure, as they went clickety-click shooting the sky, the breeze, the painted glass bottles, and the people. The people…fascinating, like the wildly exotic woman with a fan of feathers clipped to her hair or the woman with denim shorts and black stockings stamped with hearts.

And then, the air got cooler, the crowd grew stronger and the music fell silent at midnight.

For the next round, bring water (or buy one for a higher price at the entrance), umbrellas (if you are there before the sun sets), shades (to keep crowfeet at bay) and covered shoes (it is dusty).

Trivia – There’s a woman’s hand behind it (but naturally) – Asha Rao and the sante made its debut in Sept 2010.


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