Of course, we had to pick up some souvenirs from Pondicherry to bring home with us. 🙂 This was a very, very, very tough job, considering the HUGE variety of lovely stuff that you have on offer there.
Here’s what we brought home, after a lot of picking up from shelves, placing back, oohing and aahing, giving each other confused looks and panicking over prices.
From the top left picture, in clockwise order:
~A few hand-made soaps, from the boutique at Auroville – sandal, something called Nu Sandal, rice, sweet basil, apricot and lavender, and vanilla, to be precise. Can you make out I am a girl obsessed with experimenting with fragrances? I haven’t used these soaps yet, but they sure smell yummy!
~Jars of pineapple-orange marmalade, mango chutney, and orange-ginger marmalade, from the Auroville boutique. I tasted the orange-ginger marmalade at the resort that we stayed in, and fell in love with it. It has a hint of sourness, with the right amount of sweet, and a tinge of bitterness. I loved the bits of ginger and orange zest that float in this marmalade. I couldn’t resist picking up the other two flavours as well.
~Some stationery that we picked up from a shop associated with the Aurobindo Ashram – a scrapbook, a few loose sheets of letter-writing paper, notepads, and blank paper for sketching – all hand-made. I LOVE the paper products that you get at Pondicherry!
~A piece of junk jewellery that I bought off the market in the Tamilian quarters. I am not a junk jewellery person, but I love buying it all the same. 🙂 I particularly liked this necklace, and felt that it is not too junk-y. I think it will go with most of my outfits.
~Citrus scent for the OH, again from the Auroville boutique. It smells divine! And.. err… it was supposed to be a Diwali gift for the OH from me, but I confess that I am the person who is using it the most! I choose to ignore the fact that it is what they call a men’s perfume.
~Some incense sticks that we bought from a shop, made by the Aurobindo Ashram. There are loads and loads of incense fragrances to choose from in this particular shop, and I had a tough time picking up fragrances that I thought I would love to smell every day – vanilla, orange blossom, myrrh, frankincense, mattipal, sandalwood, lemongrass and lavender. I am not an overly religious sort of person, but I love lighting incense sticks and earthen diyas when the mood strikes me. On some days, my house smells and looks like a temple, when I light the mattipal or sandalwood incense sticks and light all the diyas I can find. On other days, I take in the refreshing aroma of lemongrass or lavender as I work. Some days, I love the way my house smells all cosy and romantic, when I light candles and vanilla incense sticks.