Deepavali (Diwali) is here in a couple of days! It is said that Indians celebrate festivals all around the year but nothing beats Deepavali. Preparation begins at least two months in advance. Since my house in Madras is situated right in the middle of the commercial district (imagine living in Times Square all your life!), we celebrate with the crowd and curse them as we do.
People shop for clothes, crackers, sweets, jewellery and everything else during those two long months and take refuge under flimsy store roofs when Varuna, the rain god, strikes. It is the middle of monsoon after all! Our city police work extra hard, pick-pockets work harder, and everyone spends their hard-earned Moolah on worldly objects. We all get a kick out of that, of course!
Last year, I was in India for Deepavali and had so much fun! The fragrance of fire crackers woke me up in the wee hours of the morning. We took bath with oil and traditional Indian shampoo powder called Sheekai, ate lots of sweets and goodies, visited family, friends and had so much fun! K was of course, unable to come to India during that time and my phone call to him from India to America on Deepavali was the most depressing conversation I’ve ever had!
This year, I am home, looking forward to my overly-spoken about trip to India. Though we are far away, Deepavali celebrations in America are pretty awesome too, especially when you have a huge Indian community around you to make you forget about the mad-cap fun your family is having back in India. You would be surprised to know that Alabama has a huge Indian crowd and we have so many friends in our city. So this year, though firecrackers are not going to dot our celebrations, I am making/made sweets to celebrate.
A couple of days ago, I made Laddu, a typical Indian sweet, something I learned last year from my mom number 2. I am still reveling in the success. I have a couple more goodies to make and then we are all set to celebrate the festival of lights!
In the words of my all time favorite Tamil actor, Superstar Rajnianth, Happy Diwali, folks! 🙂