A 100 days to a new me : Day 28, a Holi that wasn’t

A Holi by one of the most renowned exponents of the form, Pandit Channulal Mishra ji

Day 28 was a Holi day. Holi as it says in my previous post, is a festival of colors and I so love it. There is madness, happiness, good color, yucky color, thandaii with and without bhang.

I have never gone and seeked Holi. Our house just does not have a culture of playing with color…everybody is too cautious of the skin rashes and the mess (at least on the face of it.)The irony is, every Holi I plan to avoid the colors, it comes to me. Last year was even better; there was an anticipation that led up to the festival, I wrote Holi poems; I posted Holi thumris (a form of Indian semi classical music). I also thanks to a friend, went on to a place where Holi was sung (yes there are Holi compositions), ate Gujhia (for the uninitiated; it is like the Greek Empanada but it is sweet, filled with reduced milk and raisins) , Krishna was celebrated with very little color but an abundance of flowers and ittar (natural perfume oil derived from botanical sources).

Holi is a celebration of the eternal love of Radha and Krishna, it is a culture in Vrindavan. You cannot step in the small township on the week long celebrations. Nowhere else in the world, is there such a celebration of life.

The Sikh religion celebrates Holi in a completely different manner. It is called the Hola Mohalla. Again week long celebrations at Anandpur Sahib in Punjab see a display of martial arts, as well as Kirtan and poetry darbars.

I have to visit both these places, at least once in my lifetime.

This year Holi was strangely a washout. Neither of us seeked the other. My Sis in Law along my younger niece, went to visit her mom,. The elder one had some school obligations and stayed back. I had a terrible body ache since the night before so mostly stayed in bed. Despite warnings, my niece snuggled up with me and we spent the afternoon tending after her farm in Hay Day.

I did not even go out  and see coloured faces; I think my only brush with the festival would be that my neighbor’s grown up sons had thrown coloured water balloons at my neatly turned out Sister in Law who was leaving for the airport. I think this is where people should use their discretion. The Holi enthusiasm often over-rides logic and distinction between the can plays and cant’s.

The weight of deadlines is killing me ‘the whole thought of these interview based articles is tough. The challenge is, these are large organizations and the work rather than the people has to be the hero. Talking with love about engineering parts, when all I am engulfed by this terrible body ache, seems like a daunting task. I think if I rock myself to sleep to the tune of I can, maybe tomorrow morning I can  🙂


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