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Friday, December 31, 2010

Al Fresco Living

For our anniversary, Doug and I decided to buy terrace furniture. One of the best features of our home is a huge terrace on the second floor in the back of the house. It’s very private and partially covered, making it the perfect place for breakfast in your pajamas or quiet dinner. The house came furnished with a small table and four chairs, the family of five didn’t fit so well. After some shopping around and seeing multiple options for high end outdoor living sets we decided to ask our driver, Javeed, where we could get well priced things. He took us to Shivajinagar, a neighborhood in Western Bangalore, where there are deals to be had on Cane furniture (otherwise known as wicker). The funny thing about India is that there will be a section of town specializing in a particular set of goods; stall after stall will be selling the same things for different prices. We headed to a busy street and popped in and out of several stores, getting smarter in our bargaining skills as we approached the next merchant. I am not a haggler and frankly, I was not feeling well – so I wanted to seal the deal and move on. Doug was enjoying the banter and we came to an agreement on a nice set: couch, two chairs, two tables, custom cushions and delivery for roughly $300 USD. I quickly accessed my database of US retail prices and figured out that this was a good deal; Pier One would sell something similar for around $900. Doug was pleased all my time at the mall was worth something to him.

Our terrace has been transformed with some new plants, candles, furniture and Christmas lights. Santa delivered the presents to the terrace this year, given we had no chimney for him to slide down. Each day it makes me happy to have a few moments with a cup of coffee before I leave my expat bubble and head out into the streets of Bangalore.

Picture to come soon!  We just got a new camera and i cannot figure out how to load the photos!!!

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