After our friend Mahesh wrote about typical tea ‘kadai’ , I was motivated to write about the tea kadai once again.
Tea Kadai may be defined as a “Place where unemployed tand vetti people gather with old newspaper and sip a glass of tea or eat varki or cookies talking about happening in the world or about problem in the village”.
These kadais or shop play a important role in villages where it is considered as place for gathering especially for the periya manshans.sThe typical tea kadai is often shown in various places as per the definition and also as a place for teasing heroin.
The tea kadai has some requirements mainly, it must have 3 or 4 benches, a boiler, the boiler especially made of metal is very important and without that it is not considered as a typical tea shop. Newspapers especially tamil newspapers mostly would be very old (some may be even announcing Gandiji’s death) or new may be announcing shooting of Rajiv Gandi or in rare cases there maybe up to date newspapers.
People coming to tea shop or the kadai are also interesting. These people must wear White shirt,white veshti and white thundu. The thundu or towel is considered veryy important. Without this the person is not considered as Periya Manushan. They are the first category people and come to talk about happeningss and showing off tat they can read (some may be seeing only pictures) but will be acting as if they are double master degree holders. The second category is other citizens of the villages like vathiyar,palayathukarar etc who are not regular customers but are forced by the white and whites if they pass by the shop these white and whites will ask “Enna vathiyare intha pakkam” . Now the vathiyar is forced to come to the shop.
I forgot to tell other thing, the white and whites may not have money and call people like our vathiyar and tell “tea sollen” the vathiyar is also forced to be the customer of the shop.
The owner: The owner of the shop, may be Nair or any other guy who prepares tea mostly and also acts as cashier of the shop. We cant expect profit from the shop but we can expect more loan and the owner is forced to sell his tea for loan. Mostly he wont recieve money.
Tea Kadai, on the whole can be considered as place where a problems start and end. Thanks to Periya manushans for the functioning of these shop. Without these shops, on the whole a village cant survive!