Friday, April 27, 2007

London notes

I'd heard that London has the best Indian food and I'd believed it before coming here. After coming here, though, I had my doubts. Every street has at least one Indian restaurant, and they all have similar names - "Kwality", "Paradise" etc. How can you get quality food in this crowd? I looked up lots of reviews and they all praised places like Zayka (50 pounds a pop) or Masala Zone, supposedly a chaat place. I asked the Pakistani chap at the bookstore and he recommended Star of India. So that's where I headed for dinner today. And it did not disappoint. The kofta kadhi was exquisite and the bhindi raita was uniquely cool - rich dahi and a very exotic blend of spices - and even the chutneys were rather unique...

I decided to take a walk before dinner and found myself in front of the Victoria & Albert Museum. There was quite a crowd there even though it was past 7. Turns out that the museum is open until 10pm on Fridays.

There were lots of young people inside and a couple of cutting-edge groups were performing. One group was some sufi-rocker types - very nice voices. The second was a group outside performing some kind of a Brazilian martial art to some very cool music. Lots of young people in the museum, the entry for which was free. Out on the streets, every bar was full with people drinking beer on the streets as well.

Earlier today (Friday afternoon), I found myself near St. Paul's Cathedral and there was a lot of activity there at the Paternoster Square as well. Lots of tourists, but lots of cool-looking restaurants as well.

London is very expensive and the guy at the bookstore said they're "feeling squeezed" financially, but the diversity is incredible.

Seems like you are having a great time in London.
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