October 24, 2011 § 4 Comments
I love festivals. Not because of any religious inclinations or significance, But because of the cheeriness they bring along. Most festivals in India demand family presence. So if you stay away from home, it is a good excuse to spend time with the family. Of course, shopping for the new clothes, gifts, decorated homes and markets – all of these things just add to the fun. In last 30 years, I’ve spent only 1 Diwali away from home and what a depressing time that was. Now it is time to do it again.
To everyone unfamiliar with Diwali, I explain it as North-Indian Christmas. Family Dinners, Lights everywhere, gifts exchanging. It’s almost the same 🙂 Why North-Indian, not just Indian? Well, because most south-Indians I know do not celebrate it. They think it is all about crackers and fireworks. No, it’s not. It’s been more than 10 years since anyone in my family has burst crackers. But that doesn’t mean we don’t celebrate it. Or that we are doing something wrong. Crackers are add-ons. Use them or not – your wish. Same goes for Card-playing. In lot of families, it is a custom. Not in mine.
But I digress. So to make sure I do not fall into Festival-without-family depression, I decided to invite friends over for dinner. Yup, Yours truly is cooking for 10+ people. Of course, That itself is a major stress inducer.
However, Never mind that family is far-off. Never mind that no new clothes for festivities. Never mind that this year there will not be any gift. Never mind that food won’t be as awesome as home. Never mind that there won’t be any sweets. I’ll celebrate it in my own style. I’ll create a new Diwali custom while retaining the essence of it.
So Happy Diwali everyone.