An Ode to Fruits

                    “Autumn is the mellower Season,
                     and what we lose in flowers,
                     We more than gain in fruits.”
                                       -Samuel Butler 
It is not that I am too fond of fruits; in fact, I am a very picky fruit eater. I might like something one day and dislike it the other day. But that did not stop me from going into the wholesale fruit markets of bara-bazaar on 11th October, even if it was to only look at the place and see the various activities going on there. Here I must acknowledge that the fruit bazaar was certainly not what I had imagined; it was even better.

On entering the fruit bazaar, apart from some shops where the people were busy in packing and loading and unloading fruits from the trucks, we were greeted by a very old goat. It must be too soon for me to say, but the goat seemed to tell me that he had seen everything that possibly went on inside the mandi(popular term for the markets) and was probably waiting for a change.

Nevertheless, what interested me was that the entire place was abuzz with various activities which appealed to one’s senses. People were busy collecting fruits that had come from the trucks. While many unloaded carton full of fruits; there were others who sat and maintained records and finances of the deal. At many corners men gathered around a table and one person howled prices on top of his voice. Not knowing what it was when I went to check, I was told by another man that it was live auction at progress and those auctioneers surely wanted me to leave them in peace.

Delving further into the market one can notice that the ground had been covered by straws and hays. These were the materials in which the fruits were brought every morning and they were just discarded on the floor. This covered the floor into layers of hays and actually one can say that the ground was hardly visible. One has to walk on the “hay” floor inside the mandi. Looking up, the entire market is surrounded by houses- two or three storeyed houses. They were so old that it felt like they might fall any moment. But I prayed that they would not, at least not while I was there.

The actual market was a colorful delight. Everywhere one looked there were stack and stacks of fruits of various colors– red juicy pomegranates, huge fat pineapples, guavas, lovely peaches, delicious dates, ripe bananas, green and black grapes and the lot. But what dominated the scenes most were the green lemons. Everywhere you look there were lemons, lemons and more lemons.

While I stopped to take the entire feel in, I realized that this is nothing but an entire colony in itself. People living in the houses had their occupations just outside their thresholds. Apart from the fruit dealers proper, there were auctioneers, truck drivers, barbers, people who owned food shops and many others.

This post would not be complete if I miss out on the reactions of the people in the mandi. It was a mostly male dominated place where I could spot an occasional sari here or there. While most of them were middle -aged, many were also young who helped their fathers or uncles in this trade. Seeing people with DSLR’s in their area they became quite thrilled and gave a variety of responses. While some willingly posed in front of the camera, some started howling at us.  Many were eagerly calling us to take their photographs and one gentleman even posed for a single shot. I was actually lucky to be able to experiment with various techniques which I had recently learned from my mentor. Though not everything came out exactly what was in my mind, nevertheless it left me satisfied, though smelling of fruits and eager to go back for some more shots.

All in all, the entire trip was worth it and made me discover a new aspect of Kolkata which I had been negligent of all this while.

36 Replies to “An Ode to Fruits”

  1. Wholesale markets are so interesting. I’ve been to the wholesale fish market in Tokyo but never a fruit market. I am a big fruit lover so I’m sure I’d like this one. And it’s great that you found so many people willing to have their picture taken!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow that a huge one. We haven’t seen such a big Fruit market with so much variety. It must be awesome walking through the colors accompanied by the sweet fragrance. Did you do any fruit shopping?

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I love fruits. I do not eat them as much as I should but I find in Europe buying fruits in the store is not the same for me as being in Africa and going to a market like this and getting fresh fruit. Love the fact that you were able to get pictures without much of a fuss.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’m also a fruit lover and most of the time, I buy in bulk. And I prefer buying at local sellers and producers than from the supermarkets. Because buying at local producers / sellers means you are helping them to provide food on their table at the end of the day (and I don’t haggle, its inappropriate to do it with small sellers).

    Liked by 1 person

  5. This is an interesting take on the daily life through the eyes of a blogger. You are right that while using a camera in a market, one has to be careful of the reactions of others. But, there are great shots waiting to be taken by that ever observant blogger/photographer.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I’m a fruit lover myself, and I love going to local markets to learn more about the locals life and what they eat everyday. I love your photos because we see exactly how the market is going and that’s a piece of writing you give us!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hehe ! I remember i could not see the ground cause all i walked on was paper wrappings and hay and cardboard box chips 🙂 I never knew there was one in Bangalore. Next time i go there I will pay a visit. 🙂


    1. Yes. Its a wholesale market so everything was in abundance. what I liked best was a lot of colour was on the scene. I wouldnt normally go there alone myself but my brother/mentor was there so I did not face any problem. I would however advise to go with a guy or at least with a group of 4-5people. Takes care of the security! 🙂


  7. I’m a fruit lover as well. And I love taking pictures especially on certain bazaars. However it can be very challenging to get a good shot if most of the locals dislike cameras. You really got nice photos I must say:)

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I have been to fruit markets many times but haven’t observed my surroundings with so much detail. The description is very vivid and I can see you are getting a good hand at photography too. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks. 🙂 Yes that day my photography mentor took me to the market. In fact, he had been there many times and this time i wanted to go. So, he was my friend, guide, mentor eveyrthing for that day . 🙂


  9. and one person howled prices on top of his voice. Not knowing what it was when I went to check, I was told by another man that it was live auction at progress and those auctioneers surely wanted me to leave them in peace.

    The above from your post got my attention, same goes on here when you get to the maekets and truat me when they are atnthis, no one dares disturb them as thats their most engaging moments. Great post, keep writting. (Cool pictures.)

    Liked by 1 person

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