Wednesday 23 March 2011


Just switch on your Television and change the channel to some Malayalam Channel like Surya, Asianet, Kairali, Amrita etc. I can bet you on one thing. During the breaks between any soaps, or movies or reality shows you will see atleast one gold related advertisement. If you are lucky enough then may be even three. That is the status of Kerala. Every other week you can see an advertisement in the local newspaper or the TV channel, inviting the locals to join for the inauguration of another branch of a gold chain, with top Mollywood actors and actresses cutting the ribbon.

Its not just Rice or Liquor the Keralites are greedy for but Gold. You can see even the elite groups among the men stopping their SUV’s to run and fetch a bottle of their favourite brand of liquor from a BEVCO outlet. The women flock almost cause a stampede in the Jewellery store.

I am a Malayali girl but born and bought up in the North. My father too is like me. But like I said GOLD greed is in our DNA. He too wants to marry his daughter off with a minimum of 100 sovereigns of Gold (not kidding). My family says it’s not dowry, but something which I take to the family as my share and to be used for mine and my husband’s (idiot’s) future. It all starts as soon as a baby is born. Kiddie gold bangles, rings, waistlets, anklets, earrings etc keep coming irrespective of the gender of the baby. I was even fed a bit of gold paste during the ceremony of my first solid good ingestion. So you see, it’s in my blood too.

Some months back we specially visited Kochi with the intention of buying Gold, for my wedding which will be five to six years down the line.
 Amma- “Antiques never go out of fashion Mole! Oh god!! I did not eat my breakfast, I am so hungry. That reminds me we should buy some biscuits too.”
Poor Me- “Yeh I know this place where you get good Oreos or Butter cookies.”
Amma- “I was talking about gold biscuits mole!”

So me and my parents entered Bhima showroom at Mahatma Gandhi Road, Kochi. The entire street is lined with jewellery stores (poor Mahatma Gandhi had nothing to do with this). I enter the Huge two floored store with different sections and believe me ‘baffled’ would be an understatement. I saw equality for the first time of my life! People from all sections of the society are running around with big stacks of Gandhi Paper in their hands (Now it hit me why that road is called Mahatma Gandhi Road).

I see this man, probably a fisherman in an old worn out shirt and lungi with a thick bundle of notes in his hand. He had just bought a necklace worth 1,50,000 Rupees. Every section of the society, any cast, any district, any status, rich or poor, fisherman or businessman, all fighting to buy gold and that too the best.

Artificial Jewellery is frowned upon here. Diamonds are secondary to gold for an average Malayali family. If you are a girl and your neck and ears are bare and devoid of even a tiny gold, you are attested as poor. I come from the land where people do not mind spending the rest of their life under debt by taking loan after loan just for stacking up gold. I come from a land where show-off is done in terms of displaying of Gold. I come from the land where women stand in bus stops wearing thick gold chains and bangles (thanks to the immense chain snatching, it has reduced). I come from the land were woman are gold mines. I come from the land which buys and sells quarter of the 800 tonne Gold sold all over India. I come from the land where ALL THAT GLITTERS IS GOLD.

Photo courtesy-Photobucket


  1. whoa!!! i will be careful never to marry a mallu in that case cos im some1 who would be most comfortable getting married in a tee & a pair of denims if allowed and i hate heavy jewellery especially when it gets mandatory ;)

  2. hahaha... red..tats a cool post... :D yea even i used to wonder wats so spl abt gold... though everyone wanna buy.... n yes... gold is not dowry... its for his idiot future... n also if he has a future, u ll hav a future too.. ;)

    irony is, today i went to another jwlry in MG road..n bot' a gold chain... hehehe...

  3. nice template btw... 4got to mention tat b4.. :)

  4. Umm..I love Gold!!

    But I love diamond more!!!

  5. I like wearing Gold only for Onam,Vishu and my cousins weddings.I don;t mind Gold as such.I worry when people go way out of their league to buy gold to pacify the grooms party and the world.That is ridiculous.If you like wearing gold buy it.

  6. that photo capture the vulgarity of gold craze convincingly. well written.

  7. Diamond's they say r a girls best friend, but Gold, it seems, is a mallu's dear sibling.

    Super read, mole :)

    Interestingly, Mallus hv an enormous Gold fixation but considering tht the whole world today is after Gold due to the recession (n hence jackin up the price), guess we Mallus decoded the current trend decades ago n were always right bout it :)

  8. Hahaha.. Well written.. So true..:-)

  9. @pri- hah i hate gold!! But sadly its my family thing.piling up gold.
    @annaK- thnku for readin
    @anoop-hahah might b feeling richie rich with tht chain dangling on ur neck. But its so humid! How do u manage!
    @Harish- it depicts the present state. Nd its getting worse as days pass by.
    @R-A-J- heh mallus will b mallus. And gold are more value here thn diamond. Lol. Thnku for the nice comment. :D
    @blue lotus- i am with u girl! M the last one to walk arnd wearing gold.
    @Raghu- thnku for reading :D

  10. lol post red :)
    The lady in that pic , my goodness !!! Thats hell a lot of gold .
    And judging by your post , i believe u ve entered "100 grams of gold" instead of "100 sovereigns" ....Am i right ???

  11. @ Hari -My bad!! It is 100 sovereigns only..correction has been made. Thanks for reading word by word. :D

  12. I like wearing gold only on special occasions..But not to this extent anyhave:)

  13. :)

    well gold has been in almost all of the indian families tradition :)

    but yeah I guess what u described is bit too much

    nice post althou :)

  14. @ Neeha- Special occasions shud also have some limit right. She luks like she is almost gonna fall coz of the weight of the gold or medallions!!!

    @Chakoli- yes gold is a tradition thing. But not to the extent of lukign like SONE KI DUKAN :P

  15. red...
    danglin on my neck???? :O no...tat gold chain was not for me... :D i got it for someone else... ;) u kno wat i mean?? khe khe... ;)

  16. Hahaha...dats a nice post! Gold keeps us Southerners mentally unstable when we have a glimpse of it;)Good luck with your 100 sovereigns:)Your idiot must be one lucky idiot;)hehehe....

  17. Ooo these idiosyncrasies.... These are typical to some people. Very nice post. :)

  18. So red will be a glittering yellow one day...

  19. @Anulal- thankyou sire!:)
    @Partha- my dismay yes :P thankyou for commenting on an old post :)

  20. Your sense of humour is fantastic :) By the way, have you sen the Abhishek Bachhan movie 'Drona'? :P

  21. lol..she looks like a walking advertisement billboard of a gold mine :p coming from a south indian family..i know how much emphasis these people lay on wearing gold here there everywhere..but i will let keralaites Take the gold..err i mean the cake :p :p nice read :)

  22. I remember when I went to allepey..I walked the whole market area with my eyes and mouth wide open :D

  23. That is an eye opener! Thats the first thing we noticed when we went to kochi this year! Huge gold showroom hoardings right when u step out of the airport. and those Gold shops in LuLu Mall.. OMG! I can't even begin to describe how huge some of those necklaces were. North Indians are show offs too.. but that was another level all together!


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