Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Everywhere, the Lights!

back in the late 80s and early 90s, every year, this morning, a family would soak a bunch of diyas in a bucket of water, and go to buy sweets [sugar candy shaped like gods and godesses] and rice crispies [moori] from an old lady sitting next to a watch shop. And of course, firecrackers, lots of them [including some country-made sutli-bombs]!

The afternoon was spent in making the wicks for the diyas out of cotton, a delicate process -- too thin and it won't burn. Too fluffy and it would burn too fast.

As the sun started to set, father and sons would get atop the roof and start a pipelined process of setting the diyas, filling them with oil, and lighting them, while the mother conjured magic in the kitchen in the form of a ton of delicious foods.

And as the darkness set, this darkest of nights was transformed into a beautiful, lighted festival, which the whole family enjoyed together!

Oh, how I wish to relive those days.

Mom, Dad, Bhai -- Happy Diwali! [and to all you folks missing their loved ones today]

and to my readers, I give the following:

best wishes from me, wearing a Kurta in my office in Paris, while bhai is on a trek near Atlanta, and Mom and Dad are in Patna :-|.

P.S. NPR on Diwali in India, and in USA.


  1. I love this video!
    Happy Diwali!

  2. Ohh my sentiments exactly! To that list of rituals on Diwali, I will add some of my favorites....making a gharonda for my brothers, making rangoli outside the house, eating Malpuas and watching the firecrackers (my favorite was always the anaar)

  3. Anonymous9:21 PM

    Happy Diwali Animesh !!!

    Is there a way to translate it in French :) ?


  4. Hey Atul,
    You reminded me of those sweet old days....how i missed u both during every ritual, be it putting the diyas on the terrace...filling them with oil,making sweets... eve.puja... everything ...Diwali is never the same for me....
    love and blessings!