The legendary Petty Kada  

Posted by Praveen in


Petty Kada(Petty shop), the microshops selling anything ranging from beedi to the latest edition of Time magazine. These shops which first mushroomed in the villages are still going strong. Almost everyone in the village depends on these shops. The young sneak in for a taste of pan masala, the ladies come in to buy the lemon, the oldies stroll in for the newspaper and tobacco and the college kid to take a look at the latest issue of 'Fire', the anti-crime magazine which is more of a porn magazine itself. It has something for everyone in that little space. There are no franchisees for them. Each petty shop is independent from the next one.

It is so small that there's hardly any space left after the shopkeeper sits inside. The unmissable item of the petty shop during school days was the soda. Its not your usual branded soda. This comes in thick green bottles with the pressure kept intact using a goli(marble). And it has got more fizz than the modern sodas. Alongwith soda bottles are the long line of 'Rooh afza' bottles in all imaginable colours, lighting up the shop. Another major attraction was the 'naaranga mittayi'(lemon candy) which also comes in a vareity of colours. Its crescent shaped and tasty to the core. Then, there's the eternal favourite 'ruby' orange candy, costing 25 ps apiece with its addictive taste. Speaking about Petty kada, its not fair to ignore a member of its family, the legendary 'thattukada', which serves such delicacies as dosas, rasa vadas and omlettes. From my experience, these ultra economic shops serve better food than many of those famous star hotels. Ironic that, we also have 5-star thattukadas in Kerala.

Even now in cities, amidst all those glitzy shopping malls and high rise glass and steel structures, there are these tiny box like structures which dot the city landscape. The items that are available hasn't changed much with the changing times. Maybe, this is one of those examples of 'some things remain just the same'. Yes, some things have to remain the same to remind us of those golden olden days.

On the snap- Took this during the Palakkad trip. After seeing 1000s of petty shops, this was the only one that I've seen which has put the name 'petty shop' proudly on the board.

PS- Thanks a ton to all those who showered in sweet wishes on my and my blog's birthdays.

your crusader Praveen

This entry was posted on Wednesday, August 05, 2009 at Wednesday, August 05, 2009 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

12 comments

LOL, I live in palakkad and I have never come across this shop !!! thats the funniest name board ever !

4:16 AM

Legendary indeed! Good post and picture!

10:13 AM

Ur post brought me back to my stay at moms place... I have seen pettykada more ther, though the thattukada is a usual attraction anywhere in tvm.
I used to wonder always hw they used to manage everything inside such a smal shop, i shud tel u the service is so fast and friendly that it can beat any 5 star. 2-3 visits r more than enough 4 them to take u as a part of ther family..
sad that these days i dnt see them much..

10:16 AM

classic! :-) a blog post on petty kada... talk about dual economy.. that's an oxy moron in itself!!

1:02 PM

Actual Happy Belated Birthday now :) This must be one of your long bday bashes (few days before and after) ;)

I also really liked the taste of naaranga mittayi and orange candy (those 5 paise ones which looked like orange peels)

Yeah, whatever changes and however fast things move, some things just stand by through ages and leave a mark on our memories. I remember buying a ravalgon candy everyday from such a shop on the way to school. Shop-owner still knows me and gives me a dairy milk each time I pass by near his shop :)

No wonder even on present day 'monuments' like the Innovative Film City at bidadi - they have a dupe of a normal village 'tent' and its ambience - with a petty kada (or dabba angaDi - in Kannada) ouside it - to rlive its experience for the 'city crowd' ;)

1:07 PM

Now this, is a business model that works. Flexible, scalable, and mobile too! :D

7:34 PM

You guys are taking us poor pravasis for a nostalgic ride.. first Mathew with that Shankhumugham post and now you with pettikadas.. :)

Well, its a bit different but I miss the thattukadas very much. No star hotels would be able to provide you the 'ambience' of the 'thattu', if u ask me. :)))

9:07 PM

@vimmmuu
go to kalpathy..u'll see tht :D

@rakesh
thnks man:)

@devil incarnate
ofcourse, TVM has thattukadas in every corner and as u said, they treat u like family by the 3rd visit..

@ashwathy
hehhee..I love to play around with oxymorons :P

@supriya
first of all, thnks 4 the wishes:D..yea, bday 'bash' ofcourse;)
gr8 to know tht u get a dairy milk for free from pettykada..do share the address of tht shop with me:D

@rindo
aaaa! nee ivdeyum...kollaam :D

@scorpiogenius
hehehee...now am happy that the post has served its purpose :P
yes, thattukada ambience rocks...and after eating too the ambience in ur pocket is better :D

12:56 AM

I used to go to petty kada for those sleazy magazines...

The funny thing is that however small the shop is...it would contain almost all the thing anyone needs...If any emergency needs arise the first option would be a petty kada

But sadly even in a city like tvpm which has not become a metro yet...Petty kada is losing it stronghold...that is the ordinary customers

10:31 PM

Hey nice article there friend, these pettikadas are really an integral part of each and every malayalies out there, so as our tattukadas...who doesnt like to go out for a walk in the morning and on the way back, to take a hot tea ( 'aavi parakkunna' ) from 'gopalettans'or 'velayudettans' pettikada...chatting with our mates..actually this article made me little nostalgic, to remember my college days away from my home..

9:52 AM

@Jon
hehehee...I know it without u telling me :P u n sleazy mags!!

@sanjaypalayat
thanks 4 dropping in man..
nice to know tht this small article cud evoke in u such gr8 memories..
yes, its such an unmatched pleasure as u say :)
keep coming back

11:09 PM

Sure!!!!

1:47 AM

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