Wednesday, September 27

Navratri- time to reminisce

It is the Dusshera time, a time filled with fond memories. I belong to the category of people who go down their memory lanes much too often, and Navratri definitely stirs in me a smile.
Back in high school at this time of the year, we used to get about 10 days of break soon after our exams. Almost every house in the neighbourhood would be adorned with figurines of gods, goddesses and other favourite clay dolls in a step-like arrangement (odd number of steps), known as the "Golu". Although we did not have golus that often at our place but we did do something unfamiliar to many, "laksharchnai"- basically you recite a prayer/shloka/praise the Lord, a total of 1,00,000 times over the course of this 10-day festival. My grandma used to lead the way (obviously she was the one who knew the mantras), my sister and me used to follow her. My mom would join us once in a while (she has to make the prasad and entertain the guests).
The routine for those days would be something like this- get up early in the morning, shower and get the pooja hall ready. Once everything is ready we would start the archana which will typically go on till lunch (we repeat the same thing in the evening). Neighbours and relatives are invited to visit your golu. So evenings would be time for socializing and showing off your skills.
Anyway the point of this post is not to narrate what happens during Dusshera.
Going through it all once again in my memory I realize that we (my sister and me) used to feel so grown up. It was a big deal as kids to sit through chanting mantras for over 4 hours a day. And we were also given responsibilites of decorating the pooja area (we did not exactly have a room!), making rangolis (my sister is just too good at it) and things like that.
Now, so far away from home, as a graduate student, I did not even realize it was navratri until I got a flyer from my music school for vijayadasami pooja (well I really cannot blame it on grad school, can I?). Back at home, there is no grandiosity either.
Can I go back in time? Relive all those moments again, feel good about them, cherish them. Because whatever said and done, all I got is my memories!!


Kavitha said...

Navratri...!! And Deepavali is in a few more weeks. Good old times back home. And you're right, all we have now are memories. I'm sick of missing out on these festive times. May be next year, I'll go home during Navratri-Deepavali, instead of the usual Dec-Jan trip...hmmmm!! Happy thoughts :)

Speech is Golden said...

nothing much happened in canberra either though the desi community celebrated it with much fanfare. last year i was home for navartri....and this year :(