From a month before, I’ve been seeing ads for discounted sales for furniture, clothing, soaps, mugs, hair pins…….and what not?!! It seemed like yet another spike and sell business of these vendors. Nothing did actually remind me of Diwali. From a week before, I had neighbours asking me when are you going home? Are the tickets booked? When there was no answer, the next question was Oh, are they coming to your place? “Who?” I thought. Yet Diwali hadn’t got into my mind really.
But yesterday, our neighbour aunty asked me if the shopping was done. She was sad about the Chennai rains that she couldn’t visit TNagar this time and have to compromise for a nearby petty sale place. Then it lightly struck me, Am I missing something about Diwali? I came home. The Diwali shopping conversation was still going on in the background. Am I missing something about Diwali? I wasn’t really crazy of dresses or crackers, so Diwali shopping isn’t a big thing, after all. Yeah, true. But is it only about clothes and crackers? Am I missing something about Diwali? After the third time, it heavily stuck me, Don’t you realize, not something, you are missing just everything about Diwali!
The most exciting time of the year, year after year, was Diwali. In the then childhood days! Amma would have prepared the third round of sweets by the time Diwali actually arrives. Big drums of Muruku (Chaklis) and white ladoos were the most sought-after possessions of the house. After a few rounds of ladoos, I was prohibited to enter the kitchen. So I had to wait when amma goes for a bath or the next house aunty finds a new gossip in the colony.
It mostly used to be glossy colourful traditional clothes for Diwali. The modern types frocks were reserved only for birthdays. It was a little torture to wake up at 4 and follow the bathing protocol of amma with eyes still half closed. But a little later, when we start hearing the dishums, damals, dups, we will be fully awake in Diwali. After lunch, covered plates would be manually couriered door to door. Of course being the younger one, I always did the courier service. Somehow the ladoos delivered from other houses were always a little more interesting than our’s. For a reason, I hate these special programmes on television on special occasions as this because the way they dilute the fun of the celebration. Evenings were more wonderful which reflected the real sense of Diwali. Getting back to school after the holidays would feel like the new academic year has just started. Delightful chats would go on and on for at least a week after the festival. And our English teacher never missed to assign us the Diwali essay: Write briefly about how you spent your Diwali this year.
And here I am still writing how I spent my Diwali in childhood because literally there was no Diwali after I stepped out of my parents’ home!
Well, what wast it that actually went missing? Definitely not the clothes, crackers, sweets! I had only one reason every year to let pass Diwali without an excitement, What big Diwali? I am not a kid anymore! But there’s another reason to save it from extinction now, I have a kid at home! And I want his Diwali essays to be as exciting as mine. I have the responsibility to recreate my happy childhood. My children deserve it as well.
In a sense, Diwali is just one of them. One of the some little things that bring our childhood back for the sake of our children. I admire this human cycle invention of God’s. Once we grow up and when our childhood slips away, we somewhere in our hearts, become like blind people in a dense forest. It is to retrace our steps back to life, that a whole new generation is procreated. They restore life before we let go of it!
Time to call amma for the Muruku and Ladoo receipes now 🙂
This post is sponsored by Pepsi, Tropicana and Kurkure.