Wednesday, 27 January 2016

Diwali impact

My earliest memories of Diwali surround my mother, grandmother and father. When Diwali was around even the examinations were around. Once my terminal examinations were over, Diwali preparations would start in our home.

I would return from my school after writing my last paper and throw away my school bag on the bed and run to make my killa. In Maharashtra children prepare miniatures of forts as a remembrance of the great Maratha King Shivaji. Diwali is so integral with killa. My friends would come and we would drench ourself into the mud to prepare the killa. Luckily none of us despised mud those days. Once the killa was ready I would borrow mustard seeds from my mother's kitchen and sprinkle it on the killa. Within a day or two my killa would be green with the sprouted mustard.

Once killa was ready I would realize the happenings in the kitchen. My father would have brought all the groceries. The preparations of all the snacks would start with karanji. It was thought to be a lucky sweet, thereby ensuring auspicious start for the preparations. My mother and grandmother would decide the order in which they would make the snacks. “ Savita today we will prepare laddu and karanji. Tomorrow chakali and shankarpali. Day after we will prepare the chiwda in the oil that remains after frying.” My grandmother would tell my mother. My mother would nod her head in agreement.

In the evenings I would go out with my father to bring new clothes for me. I never remember my father buying any new clothes for himself or for my mother and grandmother. On our way back we would even buy the Akashkandil or lantern of my choice.

Diwali was also associated with rangoli. As a child I would order my grandmother today draw rangoli of a rose, tomorrow a duck and she would obediently draw it for me. My mother was least interested in rangoli. So I picked up  the art of making rangoli from my grandmother. Even after her demise, I would draw rangoli in the courtyard.

Diwali means getting up early and having bath. There used to be a competition between us - the boys in the lane, as to who wakes up early. The one who woke up early would give calls to another and tell him the time at which he woke up. “I woke up at 4 am” I would announce. I would volunteer for placing earthen lamps at the entrance. My mother would massage me with the incensed oil and scurb my body with the uptan which my grandmother had prepared at home. After bath I would wear my new clothes, eat all the home made Diwali delicacies to my heart's content and run out to burn crackers.

Time has snatched away my father and grandmother from me. But my gharwali Diwali will never be complete without their memories. Such is their impact on me. 

This blog post is inspired by the blogging marathon hosted on IndiBlogger for the launch of the #Fantastico Zica from Tata Motors. You can apply for a test drive of the hatchback Zica today.    

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