Thursday, October 6, 2011

A very Happy Dusshera to all!

The 9 day long festival Navratri, did not do much wonders here, but then of course it does not mean there was no impact at all. I have heard from friends that there are Dandiya Raas programmes held every year, and would have loved to be a part of it, but it never did happen. The swaying rhythm, the soothing beats, the mesmerising fluid movements, is a treat to watch. In Pune, used to set off at nights, lugging along sleepy kids, to join the slowly thronging crowd, even as the participants  assemble in their chosen shamianas (colourful and well lit tents), with palpable excitement. The youth, in their best garbs, trying to put their best foot forward, and the elder generation turning up with gusto, allowing themselves to slip into memories of yesteryears, I suppose.  It was fun, and must be more so being a part of it, this ritual of losing oneself to the beat of the dandiya sticks, a sense of magic seems to pervade, even as they strike each other ever so gently.

And then the southern version of Navarathiri, includes the adorable display of dolls (Golu), accompanied by a veritable feast of sundals for the entire nine days(a savory dish of tempered dals) and rendering of divine classical music by accomplished and not so accomplished, singers. I have faint memories setting up the steps and unwrapping the dolls and deities, and deciding or rather awarding the prime positions to the dolls along the steps. The chettiyar pair with their wares before them was fascinating then and now. You would have to see one, the Golu display I mean, to understand or appreciate the effort and passion that goes in, and which sustains this yearly ritual, much to the delight of many a household in Southern India.

So, when the invitation for one such Golu visit, came my way, grabbed at it with both hands. Yesterday being the last day of the Golu display, managed to go and feast my eyes on a wonderful sight, which fills ones heart and soul. Being away from such things for long, sort of invokes an yearning for them I guess. Well, am posting along some pictures, as the Tamil saying goes, yaam petra inbam, peruga ivvaiyagam!( the joy I experienced, may the whole world partake!)  

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