Friday, October 20, 2006

Its Diwali...Play it safe

Everyone has his or her way to celebrate Diwali.

Ours was entirely different we didn't have any pujas (we being of Christian faith), but my parents did not want us to feel left out so they always bought fire crackers for us.

On the way back from work dad would pick up the crackers that we would like from the store, this happens like a day or two before Diwali. Veena and I would wait for dad to get back from work those days just to see which ones he picked out. In the beginning years he would only bring Chakram, puthiri and kabi thiri (I’m so sorry that I can not translate this, but this should help)

The day of Diwali like everyone who celebrated Diwali, we would take showers in the evening, wear our newest clothes (newest means - among all clothes, clothes we haven't worn that much, we never got new clothes for Diwali) and wait for dad and mom to light the crackers. Finally they would come and all four of us would enjoy spending the evening together lighting things. As we got older dad started getting us things that went boom, rocket and mala padakam.

All our fire cracking session would end with mala padakam, then we would call it a day and go inside and eat all the sweets our Hindu friends brought over to our place.

Years went by and one year Veena says “Do you realize we are just burning money on Diwali”. For which I replied, no not really, we feel happy when we burst fireworks so we are paying for happiness. Some how she convinced me (I was may be 13 years old) that it was better to ask dad for the cash he spends on fire crackers to be evenly divided between her and me. So for Diwali every year from then both Veena and I got cash and we stayed home and ate sweets while the whole neighborhood was outside burning cash. I never felt guilty about not enjoying that day, as I got cash instead.

For me Diwali was not about Ram coming home, or victory of good over evil, but it is about my parents spending time with us and making each Diwali memorable, even though it was something that we did not believe in.

No neighbors to bring sweets over, so I'm making Kesari today.

Happy Diwali to all.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Happy Diwali to you too Thanu.

It was nice reading about your childhood diwali celeberations. The cash part was the nicest.

All the best with the Kerai.

Immigrant in Canada said...

In Malaysia we celebrated deepavali, with diyas and sweets.
I remember the first year in Kerala, I was upset because there was no diya's in our house and my dad took us for a walk and showed us a house with diya's lit all around..( the house belonged to the brother of a famous film star!)..
It was one of the most beautiful sight I have ever seen, there were hundred's of diyas all around that house.

Anonymous said...

I hated Diwali because I don't like the noise of crackers and my brothers loved crackers. So after they had finished I would get to light the Sparklers...my favorite. It is so hard to walk on roads too with boys bursting crackers.
This year was the best...due to sustained campaigning against bursting crackers in schools we had a quiet Diwali with people only lighting Diyas :) But I love the festival for its color, the holidays, the sweets and everything else about it especailly lighting the Diyas.

Happy Diwali...hope you got to celebrate in the US...and hope the Kesari turns out yumm!! :)

Archana said...

Happy Diwali, Thanu. I would love to share the kesari - so where did you say you lived again :-D?

Hmm, burning cash it sure was - still it was fun burning :-D!

Archana Bahuguna said...

Wishes to you too :-).

Saranya Kishore said...

Hi Thanu,

Nice post. Can relate to most of what you have said. Me a Christian, but used to buy crackers and wear clothes that were some what new, to not feel left out of all the festivities around :--)

We used to watch lot of TV too! :--)

Shilpa said...

Wish u a Very Happy Diwali !

Thanu said...

$alexis
Thank you... kesari was k.

$Immigrant in Canada
ivade diya katicho?

$silverine
It was yumm.. and I got to eat most of.

$Archana
Bajue mai hi rahati hoon..

$Archana Bahuguna
Hope u had an awesome Diwali..

$Saranya Kishore
We used to watch a lot of TV too.

$Shilpa
Hope u had a great Diwali too.