Recently I went to Manali for a trek and it was absolutely one of the most beautiful experiences I have ever had, exhausting but beautiful. So being a trekking kind of a trip there was not a lot of shopping that we could do, I am not that fond of shopping anyway, unless it is about books then I go CRAZY. But we visited a couple of markets and found some cute stuff here and there. I only bought a handful of things which I really liked as soon as i saw them. I am the kind of person who shops at a very quick pace, like if something catches my eye I will buy it, there is no time spent on browsing through things, I am that impatient. Which is why my mom does not like shopping with me.
Anyway, so first thing I did when we entered Manali was look up local bookstores and I found this really nice bookstore (they’re all nice tho). Our guide took me there because I kept requesting and would not let it go. So while everyone was shopping at the mall road, I was walking through these alleys and somewhere not so crowded as mall road to get to this bookstore. I will write more about the bookstore and the books I bought in the books section. I bought 3 books:
- Philosophy a very short introduction by Edward Craig
- A farewell to arms by ernest hemingway
- A Short History of a Small Place by T.R.Pearson
I also bought an Eco-friendly handmade bookmark with a Dalai Lama quote on it and a few postcards for 15 rupees each.
Next I knew exactly what I wanted so I went searching for it which was not at all difficult because almost every shop had it, The Prayer Flags. Yeah the ones which almost everyone gets when they visit the north. I could have asked anyone I know to get it for me whenever they visited but I wanted to get one for myself.
The Flag comes in different sizes and I bought the first one I saw. I got it for 50 rupees, usually I bargain everywhere but here I did not want to, since it is a Prayer Flag. These Prayer Flags consist of the colours wherein each colour symbolizes an element. Blue represents sky, white-wind,red-fire, green-water, yellow-earth. The one I got is the horizontal flag also known as Lung Dar. After reading a bit on this I found out that it is better to receive them as a gift, well, good thing I got one for my friend.
On the last day we went to old Manali again and I bought a kurti which can be worn as a dress as well. I spotted this kurti while strolling through one of the lanes of old Manali, it was displayed outside the shop. Not only did I buy it, I made my cousins buy the same one in different colours. Also convinced the shopkeeper to sell it for 300 rupees instead 600.