Celebrating Festivals....... some memories

Growing up in an entirely christian town,the first time we ever celebrated Deepawali was in my tenth standard.My Sikh friends had invited ten of us to their home .We snacked on some yummy punjabi samosaas and gulab jamuns. Chattered away like only teen girls could do, as we lighted diyas all around their terrace.The surreal ambience  of the  small earthen lamps lighting up the darkness is still vivid in my mind!

Soon after we moved to another place .It was there, we first experienced the wonderful sense of community that existed during  times of festivals.

For deepawali our neighbour aunties would all send packets of parupu vadaas , susiyam ,murukku ,thatai,ribbon pakodas ,ladoos and mixture.

Mom never cooked on these days coz there would be so much food from our neighbours.Often my friends would invite me to their home for Deepawali lunch .I would dress up in pattu pavadai/(Longsilk skrits ) go around with my friends distributing Deepawali sweets .Light crackers and enjoy the whole day

For pongal we can be sure to expect pongal , pieces of sugar cane

 For Ganesh chathurthi, we would get   kolakattais of different varieties.

For Navrathri ,  P aunty would send her twin daughters with kukum to invite us to visit them for Golu.We never missed the chance to go there .  P aunty 's talents for painting arts and crafts are very wellknown in our little town!She made the loveliest of rangolis with shaded colours that looked like painting on the floor.Her golus were always unique and each year she'd have a different theme. B and R her twin daughters ,would sing some lovely carnatic songs for us.They had lovely voices and they could also play the Veena.

We  took back packets of sundal.Each day a different sundal  .I was always touched by their thoughtfulness to keep aside some food for us without praying over it although we 've never once mentioned to them that we donot eat food offered to the gods. I wouldn't have known if they had not mentioned it specifically to make us feel comfortable.And we've never asked if it was offered as prasad. I only mention this, as there was only friendship in our minds not customs or religious frenzy.

We would do the same for christmas. Soon after our chruch service Mom would make packets of Christmas cake, diamonds  cuts and cookies  rose cookies . My dad would wait on the scooter  while we hurried around packing and counting the number of packets .She would then fill up the bag with all these packets .Dad and I would go to each of our friends' place, give them the packets , show off my dress , fish compliments and come back with a swollen head ;)

All this continues to this day.Only now, our parents are there and most of us live in other places.Here we hardly have any such festivities, but this year was different for my kids.

My neighbour  celebrated Diwali and we joined in the celebrations, just being part of the gang!She made Bajis and Gulab jamuns .We all lighted crackers together. The children ran around in glee, jumping and clapping.There were a couple of frightened kids too but we didnot have any noisy ones, just sparklers. I 'm truly thankful that my kids got to experience a wee bit of what we did back in India.



Comments

  1. hey Peary,
    u little one is soo creative..dinos gonna eat him...u eating him and he surviving in ur tummy!!..that is great!!!..he will become a great writer..i tell u..

    hey, chek out my blog..we both have a telepathy or what...!!!

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  2. oops, missed my name n details in the comment above..and hence as anonym..its me..sona

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  3. Thanks for sharing those festival memories on your blog. Christmas and Thanksgiving are big at our house but I wish that my kids could know and enjoy the myriad of Indian festivals and all the celebration and fun accompanying them.

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  4. Hi Sona
    Great to see you back!! all I know is that he has an overactive Imagination :P


    Preeti that was the reason I felt so happy about being able to celebrate Diwali this year. The kids had the most fun!

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  5. I do not have a website or a blog,was surfing the web for recipes,came across ur site,what a wonderful description of India and its people,i am a Hindu,having lived in a christian state in NE India,gone to a Catholic school,but celebrated all the different festivals with equal gusto,had fun sharing all the food and taking part in all that came along with it, just reminded me of home,thanks for sharing it

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  6. Welcome Ranjitha, and thanks for your kind words.Festivals do make me miss home terribly too.

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