Celebration Time

Happy Deepavali

Happy Deepavali. It is that time of the year to celebrate colour. The colour in our lives. The gripping beauty in the smiles of ordinary people around us. The vivid detail in the mythical even whilst we built current day connections.

The rapture of joy in ordinary lives. The joy that dominates even whilst realising that it is special that gives the ordinary energy to keep moving forward.

There are indulgences of all kinds. Friends find the time to call and talk. Reminiscing the good old times and the strands of hope for the future. The neighbour’s invite for playing cards at their home comes with a promise of a fresh start.

The discounts are on offer. Chasing numbers and opportunity there are advertisements that have out beaten newspapers. It is a festive time you see. If you lived in a Pavlovian world, you will consider talking about salivating dogs. And who doesn’t live in a Pavlovian world? Tolstoy wrote, “All happy families are alike and every unhappy family is unhappy in its own way”.

“There is a time and place for everything”, I was told a while back. “Shubh Shubh bolo”, she had said. Yes. It is the time of “Shubh Shubh Bolo”. Let’s stick to that.

So. With Anna Karenina in mind, let us just leave it that every family, happy or unhappy, celebrates its Deepavali in its own way.

It is that time of the year to celebrate colour. To deify the sweet sound of the victory of good over evil and pass some sweets.  Even as you pass the sweets around, may I invite you to consider passing some happiness around too. Make some big contribution to someplace and forget about it. Or maybe buy an ice-cream to a slum kid. Or a dress. Too expensive? How about a balloon? Whatever.

After doing all of this, think about how you could do this every month! Or maybe, every week. Why not, every day? As my grandmother used to say, help as much as you can. And when you are done, help some more.

And so, may we soak up much of the Deepavali spirit. May it last long after the festival is done. Let there be a perpetual sparkle in our eyes.  May wonder stay.

Happy Deepavali!

An ‘Engagement’ like none else !

There are two different subjects that i want to write about today.  

Subject No: 2 beckons.  Having picked up a degree of astuteness ( sic) over the years , i am going to stay with Subject No : 1.   

Subject No : 2, can wait. 

I used to read war stories. And so when well meaning relatives came up to me and declared that my ‘engagement’ would happen on a particular day, the guns seemed to boom within ! The Indian army engaged the militants, scream newspapers. And here i was getting engaged too. 

In proper Thamizh tradition, the engagement ceremony, (called Nitchiathartham) is official confirmation that all else is over. I mean, confirmation that the girl and boy are hooked and soon to be married. Over the years, this has morhped into a ring ceremony, where the bride-to-be and groom-to-be, exchange rings.  The first official interaction between the families ! 

So, there i was. In a flowing white Kurta and oversized Reebok sandals. God knows where i got my tastes from.  The ditinct smell of incense, jasmine and multiple perfumes permeated the Madurai air.  Guests strolled in. Cameras clicked with flashes of sound & light that i thought were reserved for missiles from a stealth bomber. 

There was the quintessential video grapher who insisted on shining his arc lights on me in the most inopportune moments. I insist, to deaf years, till date, that it was by design.  His logic It seemed to me that the central idea was to let the world know who the groom was. And that was by shining his video light ! By and large, the crowd understood the importance of light and focus ! 

In a while, my wife to be, in all bridal finery, walked in. And the cameras disowned me like an MP who lost an election. The crowds nodded in approval. Or atleast, thats what i thought. I saw everybody talk. I thought it was about me and my wife to be.  They could have been discussing the weather, the traffic, politics, or match-making for other prospective brides and grooms & such else. For the scared, every shadow is a ghost !  

Other rituals were on,  in a corner. Like background music that interests only music aficionados and not movie goers !  

And then, the time to exchange rings arrived. Nervousness kept me relentless company.  I slipped the ring on to her finger. 

The cameras clicked and for a moment, it felt like a celebrity.  That momentous moment had arrived and slipped by too. The moment seemed fleeting but for the photographers! True to spirit, one photographer shouted ‘once more’ ( He couldn’t get the angle right)  ! 

I think the photographers did that, not once, but thrice. Embarrassing it was. To slip the ring into her finger and then pull it out, only to slip it back in !  I bore it for the greater glory of photography, thrice ! After which i stopped and stood static. My hand holding hers, the slipped ring adorning her finger, posing for the camera. 

From, nowhere a bunch of colleagues who had travelled all the way from Bangalore arrived on stage.  With a clear intent and purposeful action that would put any social activists’ to shame, they lifted me and tossed me into the air.  Engagement Bumps, they said !  

I went up thrice into the air. White Kurta. Reebok sandal. And all else.   Each time i came down, i was filled with fright and images of the open mouthed awe struck Madurai audience. The tapestry of dhotis, sarees, safari suits in ‘shock and awe’ at this turn of the engagement !  

My wife to be stood still.  Her face pale.  Every other conversation in the room seemed to cease. My father-in-law & party to be, looked distraught.  With such raucous colleagues and friends of his son-in-law to be, i guess he (they ) had good reason.  The sole musician playing the Mirudangam stopped. My parents stood still. My brothers grinned. The cameras kept clicking. 

Thankfully, it didn’t go beyond thrice. 

In sometime the buffet was thrown  open.  The Mirudangam player resumed his play . The conversations resumed. My friends went their way. The cameras followed them and their antics.  I stood in a corner. All by myself. A plastered smile, shivering hands and a sweating forehead. Imagining & trying to see meaning of what the signs foretold.  

My last bachelor night was a stiff one.  I tossed and turned in bed. Many times over.  This time all by myself. The next day, i was married.  I havent looked back, ever since !   
And oh yes, Subject No : 2.  

Sept 8th also happens to be The International Literacy Day ! ‘On this day, UNESCO reminds the international community of the status of literacy and adult learning globally. Celebrations take place around the world.’  So says Wikipedia !
Now, Subjects 1 & 2 are two different subjects and have no connections / linkages whatsoever.  I write them in one post for the sake of factual coincidence of date. Nothing else ! 

Celebration Time !

Kavis Musings celebrates its first birthday. One year in existence and the year just zipped by. The ‘so-removed-from-tech’ person that i am, this year has been a year of slow, conscious and painstaking learning & discovery. Of codes. Of technology. Of people. Of interests. Of locations. Of positions. And my own interest in writing. A dream which i thought I was over and done with !

I remember looking at some of your spaces and being awestruck. While your spaces are still awing, this http://healthsavy.com/product/cymbalta/ space has some activity kicked in too ! The focus on improving this space has ensured that i stayed current !

“To what end” is a question that i am often posed. ‘Do you want maximum hits ? Readership ? Revenue ?..” While i am delighted and honoured to the number of readers that this space has, more readers will make me happier still ! ( Inputs will be greatly appreciated)

What i have figured is this: The sheer possibility of connecting with people across the globe, understanding different locations, perspectives and making a history of geography and boundaries is electrifying. To say the least ! I have had great fulfilment in putting this together and it has transformed to be one of the anchors in my life.

So thank you ! For being there. For reading up. For commenting (The comments that you left and leave behind have caused me to reflect and understand better). For linking up. For coming back. And for all the criticism, feedback and the encouragement. Its been a great journey and am positive that it will continue.

Thanks once again ! For stopping by. And do come back..! 🙂