Southall, the Mini Punjab
We punjabi’s are of a nomadic nature. Where ever we go a mini Punjab rises. In England the main and foremost is Southall in west London. The place is about five miles from Heathrow airport and many Indian visitors in transit make a dash to see it. It is a pilgrimage nearly every Punjabi visiting London makes. I live in Manchester, which is approximately 200 miles from London, but I do not feel I’ve visited London unless I have made a trip to Southall pronounced Sathall.
The place is full of Indian shops and restaurants. Most of the time it is buzzing with people just like in Jullander or Ludhiana. You can get the latest fashions in sarees or salwar kameez here. There are general stores offering all the dals, pickles, rice, atta, and fresh vegetables. Music stores blaze the latest Indian songs. Indian actors’ and actresses’ posters stare at you from shop windows.
What most people go to Southall for is food! Some say best Punjabi food you can eat is in Southall. I personally believe some of it is good, while most of it is average. England has a number of places such as Manchester, Birmingham, and Bradford selling excellent food. However, if you are in Southall try the Lahori restaurant. Here the food is cooked in front of you as you wait. There now exists a number of Lahori restaurant branches, but the best and original one is on Featherstone Road.
After a meal, visit the Glassy Junction pub. It is a typical Punjabi pub. Some nights they have live music. The atmosphere is great and you can even pay in rupees if you want.
So next time you are in London, have some fun visit the mini Punjab Southall.
Contributed by Madhukar Loomba from Manchester, England.
Ik Shehnsha ne banwa ke hasin taj mahal
hum garibon kee mohabat ka urhaya hai majak
Meri mehboob kahin aur mila kar mujh se!
An emperor had the beautiful Taj Mahal built
to make fun of love and emotions of poor people like us.
My love meet me some where else than Taj Mahal!