hudson lane


To the heels I bought with my limited savings from last month, as the perpetually broke college student that I am, I wish I knew that visiblising queerness comes at a social price.

 Manifesting queerness had always been on my list of things I had to do in college. When things, without any notice, went online, it bothered me because in my head college was going to be only a little more than me strutting in with the trendiest indie fashion pieces, a feminist poetry collection in hand, and a Matisse or New Yorker tote in the other. But fashion statements come at a cost and this time there was the added interest of a pandemic too.

Upon hearing the news of the much-awaited re-opening, I rushed with two friends to Hudson Lane and walked into three different shops – before buying a comfortable heel that not only matched the image in my head but also fit.. Even as I tried out the shoes, I could feel the eyes of the shopkeeper on me. It is for a friend who is flying in, I remember saying to just avoid being value judged by an abject stranger.

But if the shopkeeper was a stranger I was willing to lie to, people in my college were too large in numbers to even respond. And, being a dream that I had nurtured for the longest while, this was a question I was more than willing to engage with. The online college had limited my interactions with a select few people scattered across the college, people who I thought would point towards my heels and say, Oh my god! You did it? or with an air of abject sympathy say, Aren’t those hurting? Do you have band-aids?

Appraisal and sympathy are west winds that comfort the length and breadth of your skin upon touch. But what I was unprepared for was walking into my canteen quarters and being faced with groups of bulked up men from the northern quarters of our country, taking stalk of my heels coupled with my ajrak shirts and small rainbow pendants – just to turn back and initiate a pungent and viral smirk that would birth a sense of hateful sense of directed towards my end.

There would of course be the whispers – annoying to an extent that you know you are being spoken of but you hardly have the courage in your system to walk up to them and ask, in absolute De Niro style, are you talking to me? The first few days of offline college makes you realise that truly the online space is a created bubble wrap of people who are tailored to be decent to you, as opposed to the offline front which throws open the possibilities of being sucked into a whirlwind of heterogeneous socio-cultural capital holders where being the other comes at the cost of scrutiny on the altar of toxic masculinity.

The North campus too, with all its red bell towers and granite pillars, is a divided world in itself. The world of Ramjas is characterised by muted warm colours and gazes that make you hit home the realisation that you’re abjectly out of place – that you don’t belong and you never will. Cross the road and on the other side, outside JP Stall you’ll find a queer visual haven where wearing H&M and carrying Starbucks with neon painted into your hair – makes you no longer an object to be stared at but rather something desirous and aspirational.

Anwesh Banerjee

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Thinking of going out for a cute, non-expensive date with your significant other (or maybe yourself!) this Valentine’s Day? We give you the best spots in North and South Campus for a memorable Valentine’s experience.

Here are spots in North Campus you mustn’t miss!

1) The Ridge: The Kamala Nehru Ridge has its own history of being a lover’s spot but be careful, don’t let the monkeys get you or the insects harm you! Bask in the winter sun for a peaceful getaway from the bustling North Campus.

2) Delhi School of Economics: The Delhi School of Economics (DSE) lawns are perfect for a mini photoshoot in the winters. DSE has many lawns (some less populated) which give you the perfect peace and quiet with your significant other. The tea from JP Tea Stall makes it worthwhile!

3) Kamla Nagar: Take a stroll through the bustling market and hunt for the cheapest outlet you can find. It can be a super fun thing to do with your partner while getting lost in the many narrow lanes of ‘K-Nags’.

4) Hudson Lane: Okay, we get it. It’s not exactly ‘non-expensive’ but take a walk through Hudson Lane before 11:00 AM, when the restaurants and cafes haven’t opened for business yet. Save up for Valentine’s day as many restaurants would have offers going and it’s the perfect way to feed the capitalist agenda.
5) Majnu Ka Tila: Roam around Mini-Tibet while devouring delicious dumplings or laphing this winter with your partner. It’s the perfect place to shop for cheap clothing, bags and more trendy stuff! Make sure you try the cafés and restaurants serving Tibetan, Nepali and even Korean food.

Discover these unexplored spots in South Delhi with your partner.

1. Siri Fort Ruins: In the heart of South Delhi lies the beautiful and isolated Siri Fort ruins. Pack a picnic basket, enjoy the Valentine’s Day afternoon in this brightly lit monument and make your day special. The nearest metro station to reach here is Green Park.

2. Deer Park: Cherish the breath-taking sunset at Deer Park in Hauz Khas Village. The freshness of nature and sight of the gorgeous lake will bring positivity and happiness in you.

3. Lodhi Garden: A lovely spot to escape from the hectic city. Come along with your partners to admire nature, tombs and a lake in this relaxing spot. You can spend hours strolling through the area and appreciating the flora.

4. Park behind Ansal Plaza: An empty, isolated yet beautiful space for you to meet and have a simple and peaceful date. Just behind Ansal Plaza, this seems like an old piece of land but is very well maintained with lovely seating arrangements under the shade of tall stunning trees.
5. DDA-Gulmohar Park: Extremely close to Green Park Metro Station, this well-maintained park is a perfect spot to bask in the sunshine, spend lazy afternoons with your significant other and enjoy watching rehearsals of various cultural societies who generally come out to practice in winters.

6. Sheikh Yusuf Qattal’s Tomb: An old monument with intricate jaalis, blue tiles and a 12-pillared structure, Sheikh Yusuf Qattal’s Tomb is a peaceful and beautiful unexplored date spot with minimal tourists. This Valentine’s Day, explore this hidden marvel with your loved ones and enjoy.
Image Credits- Pinterest

Sakshi Arora
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Jaishree Kumar
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I scream, you scream, let’s all scream for ‘RAW CREAMS’! The sheer number of restaurants in the Hudson Lane and GTB Nagar locale of North Campus bewildered me when I was a fresher, and even today, two years later, I always feel like Alice in Wonderland when I go to this area of endless food opportunities. But as a die-hard fan of all things sweet, I’ve often complained that there aren’t enough places that exclusively sell dessert. However, in recent times, several dessert parlours and bakeries have come up that can satisfy anybody’s sweet cravings rather awesomely. And one among these is ‘Raw Creams’. Started by Sahil Gulati and Pushpath Oberoi, who famously run ‘II Fat Indians’, their very own food and beverage brand, ‘Raw Creams’ is a dessert parlour that’ll fascinate and stun even someone who doesn’t have a sweet tooth. It has an extensive menu that offers different varieties of chocolate and fruit ice creams, along with waffles, shakes, smoothies and coffee-ice blends. Although everything on the menu will make you instantly salivate, what this place is really known for is its nitro ice cream and ice creamlettes. Now, the concept of nitrogen ice cream is not new to Delhi. Azote in Safdarjung Enclave is probably the pioneer in this space. However, one visit to ‘Raw Creams’ and you’ll agree with me that it certainly gives an established brand like Azote quite a run for its money. We tried the ‘Nitro Chocolate Brownie’ and the ‘Nitro Guava Chilli’. While the former absolutely satiated the cocoa devil in us, the latter was a refreshing change and a definite favourite. Watching the preparation was a treat to our eyes, and we couldn’t stop awing over the intricacy with which our ice cream was made and served. In the creamlette variants, we tried the extremely popular ‘Strawberry-blueberry’. Who said this flavour was for girls only? Although pink and pretty, this one made our guy friends wanting more! As they made our creamlette from scratch, using milk poured onto a freezing steel pan, we couldn’t help but marvel at the procedure that turned a mundane liquid like milk into a spectacular ice cream, in a matter of minutes! Finally, we gave into our greed and ordered a ‘Fresh Strawberry Waffle’. The amount of customisation that they allowed us on our waffles blew us away. In a nutshell, our experience at Raw Creams was not just satisfying in terms of the flavour riot it created in our mouth, but visually rewarding too. We went home thoroughly contented. We highly recommend this place. Kudos to our friends, the ‘II Fat Indians’ Sahil and Pushpath! Kriti Sharma [email protected] Image Credits: Kriti Sharma for DU Beat  ]]>

Hudson lane, the popular hangout of college students of north campus and surrounding colleges houses many quirky cafes. If you’re in the mood to try something different this week, we suggest For God’s Cake, a bakery-cum-café, situated near the Hudson café. As soon as you enter this place, you get captivated by its beautiful décor. The fairy lights along with the beautiful flowers hanging from the ceiling, colourful and vibrant chairs and miniature windmills on the walls provide a warm and an amiable atmosphere. It offers a pretty expansive menu ranging from appetizers such as cheesy fries, baked nachos, money bags, quesadilla to over 7 different types of pizzas and pastas and also pancakes and waffles.

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I started with chips and dips where the ‘chips’ are an assortment of nachos, French fries and nuggets. There are three different dips provided which were a pink-coloured beetroot dip, salsa and sweet chilli. The french fries weren’t soggy and were well seasoned which sure was a plus point. The dish is a good change from the mundane and provides variety and at the same time is easy on your pocket. I then ordered penne white sauce pasta with mushroom. Being a hard-core pasta fan, I usually have huge expectations of it and I can safely say I was not disappointed. The sauce was rich and had mushrooms and olives in sufficient amount. Even the quantity of the pasta was adequate and could easily be divided between two people. I also tried the firewood pizza called ‘Go Veggie’ where one could savour exquisite toppings such as yellow pepper, tomatoes, mushrooms, broccoli, and zucchini. The base was light and crisp with the right amount of cheese which didn’t make it heavy, rather made it easier for one to enjoy it. Their ‘Brown and browner’ milkshake which is a blend of Oreo and chocolate fudge is nothing less than paradise for all the chocolate-lovers. All this came down to Rs. 350 per head for two people, which is more than a fair bargain.

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One can also easily get any of their mouth-watering desserts and cakes packed from the enormous variety of delicacies the bakery offers which also propagates a love for desserts through a quote on its wall saying “Life is too short, eat dessert first!”
Nishita Agarwal
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Image Credits: Nishita Agarwal for DU Beat