Every one will have nostalgia. Some memories. Some time in your life, you wish you can experience again. Or in other words, you wish you forget. The picture above is from one of the temple festivals. This particular temple, I have never been. But I have been to many temple festivals while growing up in south India.
The vibe we get there, cannot be translated over here in few words. You need to experience it. You need to live it. Now almost two decades, I never had a chance to participate in one of the temple festivals. Life has taken many turns in the last two decades. Do I miss them. Yes. I do. The culture, the traditions, the life experience, the energy you get from these instances are hard to forget.
When I was growing up, I should say, I am about 14 years old or so. Just like my older son now. I will go and spend all ten days in the temple. I never went home after school. Yes, my parents were not too happy. But I did it. My friends all did it. We had so much fun and life. Today, I felt like writing this, because it is festival season in Kerala. My home town has many temples. They all had festivals. Many artists come and perform. The crowd enjoys them with out any religion barrier. We all are one. Just humanbeings.
Most of the temple festivals end with a procession by elephants and fire works. As you can see in picture above all elephants will be adorned with gold ornaments and many other colorful decorations. Temple society will fight for the best elephants to perform those processions. They go around the town for the entire night. We kids used to follow them. I still remember, the baby elephants playing with the tails of older ones. Also, once they are full and not hungry anymore, they throw coconuts to each other. The experience we cherish, as a writer, I am not capable to describe here.
Rarely one or two times, elephants go mad. Those instances are scary. But, I still went with elephants every year. Families, even if they are separated and away from Kerala, they made sure to meet during this times. Just like Christmas, we see this as family re union times.
Fire works at the end of the festival is the most amazing part. Some temple committee organizes competition. Those competitions are a treat to watch. We never went home all these ten days. We ate temple food. Watched many programs. Some times even walked from temple to temple to see different cultural programs.
Everyone will have nostalgia…. Enjoy them….
Life is always a journey. One cannot plan or reserve tickets….
I grow up hearing and practicing a lot of superstitions. I have to say I believe in them. Reason is simple, it is engraved in our breath. We followed it religiously. Our parents and grandparents made sure we practiced them. Nowadays many years living outside country, I find these superstitions we believed back then lost its importance. I started to think why our generations from the past practiced them. There are many reasons as to why already out there. But I want to reason myself why this has started at least my interpretation. I could be wrong.
I have seen one of my neighbor who owns a shop always waited by his gate in the morning. He will not walk until unless he see a bike coming from his right side. He also makes sure it is not a milk bike. He believes that if bike passes by his right side when he walks towards his shop, that day he will get great sales. This happened every day until he passed away. This is actually a superstition. Even my grand parents practiced this. They will never walk out of their house if they see a milk selling bike coming. No one had good explanation as to why? I thought about it a lot. I have no convincing reason either. I have walked out when a milk bike came, nothing happened that day. I was just nervous a little, reason being, I was told many times it is not good. Readers, if you know any valid reason, please input your comments below.
If a crow sits on your front fence and cry, then people believed there will be visitors that day. I have seen people prepping extra food on that day as they are convinced there will be un announced visitors. To tell you the truth, I have myself experienced many times this comes true. Now living in a country there is hardly any fence, I really couldn’t try this out here. This one I do have some explanation. My reasoning to this is simple, Usually people says this during the month of wedding season. I have noticed this all the time, people do not say or anticipate visitors, when crow usually cries by sitting on their entrance fence, but they will comment only during wedding season. It is a common practice in India to invite all the relatives, if someone getting married. There are certain months good for getting married as well. People usually expect at least 3 to 4 weddings during that time. So crow crying and visitors coming does not really have any connection. But it did, during my childhood. Any other explanations please do comment and share.
Asking for a prostitute to come from the opposite direction of your path, if you are going for an important matter, such as a land deal or court case. I have seen this happening during my younger days as well. Not sure why they did. But it was a common belief that if they pass a prostitute everything will fall on their favor. This superstition, I have many problems with. Usually the very same people will not let prostitute to come and attend any functions in their house. They consider that as bad. But when they want to go somewhere, then the presence of them will become good. Does this make any sense. Till this day, I couldn’t come up with any reasoning. Readers, if you know why, please do comment and share your thoughts.
Dropping mustard seeds will bring in poverty to your home. I am not sure how many household have done that and nothing happened to them. I can understand, mustard seeds are very small and if this gets dropped. It is hard to collect them. If you do also, dust will be there as well. So my assumption is that, if in any case, mustard bottle fell down, It is almost impossible to get everything back and on top of that cleaning is difficult. So most of the household must have thrown them away. Most likely the older people decides to add some scare to it. And people became more cautious when they handled mustard seeds. At least this superstition of bringing poverty did it. Again this is my own assumption. I could be wrong.
If anyone bring food to your home in a container, then it is a must you return that container with some food in it. People say, if you give container back empty it is not good for family. Not sure why? We practiced this and saw my parents even doing this. Also some family even put a piece of chilly, when they returned the container, if they did not give food. This prevents bad eye falling on them. Again, this particular superstition, I find it hard to come up with any sort of reasoning.
Wake up in the morning to your right side, not on your left side. I still practice this. But I have never instilled this to my kids. I am not sure their days are bad, when they wake up in the morning and roll to their left side to get up. I got that habit because the society I was brought up had all these superstitions and they religiously follow them. I cannot think of a day, when I got up by rolling towards to my left side. You may wonder, why don’t I? No idea. Do I think, my day will be bad if i do? Yes, I do think that way!!! Well, it is hard for me to change.
Superstitions usually sticks with you because of the culture you are brought up in. Regardless how much you got educated and how much you tend to analyze how this all started. I will say, if you are born and you practiced during your childhood, that fear in you will stay. The day you did not practice and some thing bad happened to you, it is very easy to relate to the superstition.
I would love to hear from you readers, if you have a different take on this. Please do comment and share your thoughts. If you like my writing, please support my memoir DROPLETS.
I could be one of the stats from India. Daily one student suicide because of the pressure they go through. Can you believe it?
It is true. I have been in this situation. Hey, I can say this much. I never thought of taking my life. I did want to run away from home. Many times. Today after many years, when I look back. I think I had some one looking up for me. Some people call it as God or some supreme power. I still don’t know what it is. I am lucky…
Why? This much pressure. Society is so blind in India. Never changed, this many years and still the same. I thought, situations have changed. But NO guys. I am furious. Recently I read in the news paper, that parents paid some person to arrange strangers to write their kids entrance test to get admissions to Medical courses. Now what happened, they got caught. Now kids got debarred from colleges. The parents are in Jail. Again- Why? What did they got out of this? Kids lost their education. They lost their parents. Now for their entire life, they will be horrible.
I am sick and tired of this. Prime Minister Narendra Modi Ji is doing a lot for the country. But it is high time for him to take a look at this situation. Students are our future. He should reform education system. He should find ways to educate society, that other careers are needed for a well balanced community.
Why, they are forcing kids to do only certain courses? Why the parents are forcing the kids to do the courses they don’t like? Also, why this much pressure put on kids when they are at colleges? Why they have to perform so much? Why they cannot just be kids?
All these talent, these parents create by forcing kids to develop. Kids do it just to make their parents happy. Then they leave country. So what does this society of India really get out of this? I am confused here. Every time I think about it. I am sick on my stomach.
We are ruining our future. Our kids will never live in peace and they lose their childhood. My generation, most of my friends went through this pressure. I thought when we grow up, atleast our kids will not go through this kind of pressure. I thought we will let our kids be kids. Trust me, I am doing my best to give my kids the best childhood they can get. I am living with them. I am getting my childhood back with them. I am re living my dreams, what I used to dream about when I was a kid.
Shame on you all guys, I am calling out all my friends back home. I know many of my friends still running after education institutions paying big donations, securing a seat for their kids, SO the kids get tortured in the system. India has not changed. STOP IT.
Still kids suicide every day because of the pressure we put on them to perform. We don’t give them choice and make them believe, if they don’t become doctors or engineers, they will not make it in their lives. Shame on me as well, I am not able to change the society I came from. I am doing what I can by writing this. Please stop. Let kids live, Let them chose their paths. Let them achieve their dreams. Let them pave their own fate. Guide them. But don’t force them to give you happiness.
I wrote my book, DROPLETS thinking one day the words in my book will open some people eyes. Who knows? My parents realized now, what I am saying. They are not forcing their grand kids. They love them who they are. So, guys, you all can change. We will save kids.
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Featured Reviews Cristie U, Reviewer This memoir captured the emotions that author felt when moving to a new country perfectly. He had to contend with strict parents, little money, and other issues and captured those moments brilliantly in this fish out of water memoir. The honest writing makes it easy to empathize with him.
I am excited at the same time speechless to get a 5 star review from Cristie.
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