A few weeks ago now, I wandered the streets of Tooting, in South London, for a couple of hours.
One of the first things I noticed is that there are very very few pubs about. Not surprising I guess as Tooting is home to a large Pakistani community. Bizzarely enough, the Mosque and the Islamic Cutural Centre are in a converted building which also hosts what looks like a pub/bar (a quick search on the Internet just now reveals that this is in fact a nightclub!).
The Sri Muththumari Amman Temple a few minutes away looked disused.
The mini food supermarkets on the main street are treasure troves as far as Im concerned and I stocked up on a few favourites. There is an abundance of sweet shops and a quick peek in one of those revealed a variety of treats which looked as delicious as they looked mysterious.
And restaurants.. I dont know how you could possibly choose somewhere to eat if like me you don’t know Tooting well. The majority of the restaurants (if not all of them) have one award or another displayed in the windows. Still, I don’t suppose this would be a problem as most of them were already busy even though it was only late afternoon.
I stepped into a few of the many clothes shops, all with colourful windows. Beautiful fabrics, jewellery and shoes
From the shops and restaurtants on the high street, you could think that Tooting was home to large Pakistani and Indian (Gujarati) communities only, but having had a quick look around the markets, I saw other influences mainly Somalian, Jamaican and Polish.