Monday, November 07, 2005

festival of fireworks....I mean lights

Diwali ('w' is a 'v' sound, supposedly the English imperialists introduced the letter 'w' into the hindi language but there is not a sound to go with it) Indians use w and pronounce v - this carries over when Indians speak English - if you want to work on that Indian accent!  'where' would be 'vhere' - with a little roll of the 'r' too!
or if someone sends me a text message or sms on my cell/mobile phone - we would 'we' shortened to the phonetic 'v'.
By the way, Jamie and Justin arrived a couple of weeks ago (hip hip hooray!!)...have I made an entry since then? It is Tuesday, Diwali and pop/bangs of what I would call M-60's and M-100's in the states have been going off all week at in frequent moments.  Fireworks began about hm mm, 5am Tuesday morning and picked up intensity around 8 or 9pm growing in the competitive noise level and height hour by hour until I just gave up exhausted and fearful of a night without sleep around midnight. 
I thought Mexico loved 'crackers' as they are called here in India.  The Indians passion for the noisiest of these pesky explosives bountifully exceeds by bursts of eardrum popping, heart jumping blasts just as  their love songs and expression of emotions for their beloved also elapse any other countries known native musics.
The photo graphers set up their tripods for the competition (that would be the Pan ch Vati 14th floor Biggest Tripod  Competition 2005) - excited to catch the colourful explosions filling the air.  On the 14th floor we were lucky enough to see as far as Worli and all across the Anderhi skyline glittering shimmering fascinating colours.  By the way it is about 8 o'clock. 
After several snaps, light dimming and changes in the room and camera setting adjustments the photographers were pleased with the outcome...good timing, glad we caught the spectacle, we were in awe of the grand finale!
Wrong...preview is more like it, like a movie trailer release for the budget busting studio blockbuster coming next month.  We were cursing this festival of commercialised crackers come midnight, no wonder I heard people say they stay up all night on Diwali.  I think Justin asked if this is what a war zone would sound like?  Stacie's tip o' the day: Too much of anything is not a good thing.
Oh don't get me wrong, Diwali is nice - but let's stick to the festival of lights (seeing all the 'Christmas like' hanging lights illuminating the buildings around town was amazing) not the festival of pulse raising bursts.  The lights, in Hindu culture were to welcome Ram home after a major battle.  This new twist of bursts on the festival I think would have scared him away.
Not to focus on the one - laughable - negative:  We did have numerous tasty Indian sweets, happy Diwali and new year well wishes, visit with the neighbours and a view of their temple, a Pooja, poolside party at the society, and fun decorating with rangoli (sand like and coloured powders used to decorate the doorway of households see a pic at jamie and justin's travel blog and dias small oil and wick filled clay dishes.
There was a long break from work, a weekend trip to matheran and shopping! Ied (sounds like EED) was also celebrated, as the break of Ramadan.  But was a more private affair I am told by my Muslim colleague at work, not the expressive display of Diwali with all the fireworks and such.
So next major festival is Christmas then in mid January Bakr-id.  Followed by Holi in March.  Wedding Season is big in December and they each have their own accompanying festival or Bharat, the singing, dancing and horseback groom procession to carry on the celebratory mood of India!  So the always entertaining adventurous and exciting life in Mumbai continues, where a simple stroll down the street may include a never seen before sight.  Until the next festival or adventure .....Aur revoir! (they do not really have a word for goodbye in Hindi) ciao!

Enjoy this Diwali with Y! India Click here

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