Tuesday, October 19, 2010

As the dhaak starts playing.

It starts in early September... when the naked play grounds are slowly dressed with bamboo skeletons of pandals that end up looking so magnificent, and find themselves frozen and captured in photographs for people to cherish.. when those cultural programs start in Shiv Mandir, with competitions of all sorts... when all of us friends go and waste hours and hours in the late evening listening to absolutely rotten karaokes and "classical dance" by "ladies of the colony" which is actually nothing but moving hands and legs uncoordinated with nervous looks spilled across the stage.. but we all still go, and be a part of it. Because it marks the beginning of a celebration.. A celebration that compels people to look around wide eyed at the grace that each and every idol has, even when it's not adorned in costly banarasi saris and stands of bare soil with that sweet smell of hard work and skilled labor. 

As mohaloya dawns, the familiar songs buzz in every radio of C.R.Park, and around Delhi... when the chills set in on everybody's back.. Durga pooja's a finger away. It never bothers me to wake up at 4am and sing infront of the whole colony, all those typical mohaloya songs.. because that excitement in the air is never more evident than that morning of melody.

As pooja starts, food isn't cooked at home anymore, and the stalls in every pandal earn crazy loads of cash. There's some or the other artist singing every evening, or some dance troup dancing to entertain the super enthusiastic bongs and non bongs. The organizing committee guys deck of with the flashiest of clothes and sit in their little cubicle looking like the dudes of the freakin' world, and look like they're giving away noble prizes when they give away residential passes to us xP
The volunteers of my age are complete dogs. They wear the badge to have chillout sessions while distributing bhog (it's an amazing experience, just fyi. I loved doing it) and to get free entry and food to the pandals. And to basically look important :P 
And omg the bongs......... Silk clothes are IN. Okay. Trust me when I say it. Everybody wears silk, and ethnic wears, and look all amazing. [Umm, ok not everyone] but most of them anyway! 
All of us teenagers have cash on us, for a change :D and we eat like pigs. Hog. Literally.

Chairs are pulled and groups of friends and family sit in circles to enjoy the day, with food, music and ofcouse, the idols they adore completely. Everybody crowd around in the evening for the aarati and the dhunochi dance which is just gorgeous and perhaps theee most beautiful part of the day. {Didn't do it this year :( } The roads don't have cars, they have long  threads of people, and crazy lines with people chattering and clicking photographs on self timers. 

As dashami rolls by, people get sentimental. The ladies go for shidoor khela, and rest of the people join in around afternoon to watch all the trucks take away the idols for Visarjan... that's a celebration of it's own, when all of us dance like maniacs and scream "Aschey bochor, abar hobey!" which means "Poojas shall be back next year".. the dhak plays at it's best, with people doing their last minute prayers as they see the face of the gods and goddesses fade away as the trucks gather speed. 
Slowly everyone wishes everyone Shubho Bijoya , stuff sweets into each other and hug like maniacs.. And draw alponas in the entrances of their homes.. slowly people start updating their statuses on facebook about how awful they feel and how much they miss poojas already.. and the thousand comments on the newly uploaded Pooja albums...... 

It sure is a celebration. A celebration which is so close to my heart, that as they say-- I don't cry that it's over, but I smile that it happened. (Modified,yes)

This year's pooja, like every year gave me few of the most amazing memories.. ever. 

Durga pooja can never loose its charm,
cause that sweet beat of the dhaak always echoes somewhere in my heart, and makes me smile to the wait, that's always worth it :)

Shubho bijoya! 

-- Drum beats,


  1. Loved it. Goes perfectly with my bottle of scotch to help me deal with post puja depression.


  2. This post made me nostalgic. :(
    I was just thinking of my pujo times in West Bengal as I went through various pictures put up by my bengoli friends...

    I miss the pandals, the dhol, the beatiful murtis, the bhog... Sigh!

  3. I've never been a part of these celebrations like the Bongs! I've just gone to see the pandal nearest to my house. This post makes me want to be there even more.. for the whole celebration. I want to see it up close and be a part of it so much. Maybe one day! :)

  4. Wow! You completely captured the essence of Durga Pujo. Amazing :)
    The snaps are awesome tooo :D

  5. @Ujjwal: Aaah,I know exactly what you mean!

    @Meera: Oh wow West Bengal's pujo is gorgeous.. You get the real feel of it there.. with all the bongs gearing up from way before the actual dates.. it's amazing :)

  6. @PinkPatiyalaSis: Hobey hobey abar hobey! ;)

    @Shiiiiv: Oh sweets, next year, you and I, for sure, yeah? will show you around. you're really missing out on something!

  7. @Priyanka: Thanks lady! haha yeah I'm kinda proud of the snaps,too ;)

  8. Cheeeeerrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr!!
    ANSWER your phone. Where are youuuu? I miss you like a fat kid misses B&js! =(
    why haven't you replied to my mails?
    I have SO MUCH to tell you OMG.
    And this post.. Awwwww. I wish I could ever be a part of this! i mean omg it's gorgeous! =)
    Ily! get olllllllll!
    or mail me!

  9. and and and omg guess whaaaaaatttttt! I'm trying to figure something soon (thatthinngggg). please tell me you READ my mail? if not replied?
    omg it's been so crazy out here, though i'm kinda happy that dad's been around more often =)

  10. ABOOOOOOOOTTTTTTTTTTTTTTT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    I'm sorry, my phone's downstairs! I'll run and get it. call me again? Please? Oh please? OH PLEASE?
    wtf is B&js? :/
    and.. err.. yeah about not replying :/ sorry man, it's been crazy busy at my end.. I read it tho! :D and WOW. I mean just WOW.
    Ro called about two weeks back =)
    Oh that bitccchhh! how long is he going to be in Japan for?
    and hey I'm so happy about uncle being around more often.. hell he travles like crazy man.

  11. Yes yes yes baby I am! =)
    I was just trying to get my hands on mum's phone =P looks like i gotta wait heyy =/
    whatever, yeah i'll call you in like, twenty or somethin' yea? =)
    aaahaahah! i know right! it was so friggin' crazy cherr, i was like OMG seq you can't be serious!
    oh and heyy seq says hi btw, i was ol with her =)
    speaking of which where's remya? i haven't seen her around here in a while! how's she? forever 21 like pretty hey! =) give her hugs okayy.

    haha rohaan that bitch. [ haha remember that "aa"?] =P yeah it's been about 2 weeks? he should be home next thursday, that is unless he falls in love with a lady geek there and make japanse babies.

  12. BWHAHHAHAHAHAHA, Shit I missed all of that Mrill! I'm so glad you;re back after soooo long! :)
    haha remya's great. We went for this competition today, ended up retarding away as usual. She's here lesser than you are, these days. She's gone pretty anti-internet. Which sucks, I know :|
    So yeah. But I'll tell her you said Hi.

    OH. And say Hi to Seq! Tell her I miss her!

  13. Awww. I'm sure sweetheart. Hahahaaha yeah I remember those crazy conversations we used to have here =P
    Damn tell her to get here sometime, I miss her. =[

    Seq misses you too! Listen ima go now, i'm callin you in like 5 ? yeah?
    and please reply, like NOW.

    <3333 =*

  14. I will :)
    yeap shall wait! quiiiickkk!
    Yes, on the mail, roght now! :)

  15. Everytime I read one of your Durga pooja posts, I marvel at the rich culture and tradition that lies the heart of our country. Aren't we lucky?


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