Murtis, sweetmeats and leather socks

“Where are you guys from?” asked the little girl in the beauty salon in Fordsburg. “Uhmmm… I’m from Joburg...” I said. She seemed disappointed. Her mom frowned as she looked at the large camera-toting group that gathered outside the salon. We’d been following Ishvara Dhyan from Ancient Secrets around all morning, ooh-ing, aah-ing and being touristy all the way. A ‘tourist’ from Joburg? Huh? Fortunately, the lady behind me saved the moment, proudly declaring that she was from Germany. A real tourist for the girl and her mom.

I felt somewhat self-conscious, but here’s the thing: I actually believe you should be a tourist in your own city sometimes. Just to see and experience new things. What do you think? In the meantime, here are some Fordsburg shopping photos:

Pretty, shiny things in the colourful hookah shop. 

I think we stumbled upon an emerging trend of leather socks (just R80), which were also sold in the hookah store in addition to make-up and art!

Tiger balm, sandalwood soap and rose water from a health shop which also stocked skincare products from the Himalayas (and they work!). 

Delicious – really delicious – sweetmeats from Shalimar Delights, a Pakistani shop that specialises in these sweet treats. Liked the hessian-type bag and the colours of the chevra (an Indian and Pakistani snack). 

Outside the Istanbul Kebab and Shawarma place. A crowd gathered to watch this guy make laffa bread – a flamboyant dough-throwing affair.

Great to see one of these old scales in action at Fordsburg's fresh produce market.

Inside Kwality Spice Works. The prices and the range were great and the owner gladly shared tips and advice.

With sugar cane stacked neatly in the corner, the Juice Den specialises in sugar cane juice. I had the sugar cane and granadilla option. Totally worth a stop when you’re on that side of town.

Some Fordsburg pigeons – for sommer!

Some pendants from the Hindu prayer shop (the murtis (holy figurines) on top are also from there). It also stocked incense – a good tip from Ishvara: don’t go for the kitsch packaging, the more subdued ones are usually better options.

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