Tuesday, March 14, 2006

Holi - the thanda (cool) festival

Picture picked from www.hindustantimes.com

Holi is a big festival in India and really enjoyable. Its all water & colours all day long. Pretty similar to Songkran in its style.

Its a spring festival . Also the Hindu New year for many. Its also connects with the legend of the duel between King of demons - Hiranyakashipu & his son, but also the devotee of Lord Vishnu - Prahlad.

The second day is spent throwing water colors and powder colors on each other and strangers. Its especially risky to walk through those 'inside city' areas between tall buildings - you never know when a water filled baloon bangs on your head!!

Holi was the most fun when we were in Hostel. Each year, this time, a full drum of Bhang would be concocted. Bhang Thandai is a mix of Milk, Sugar, almonds, fruits, various leaves and yes... & the little but key ingredient - cannabis. (it looks so wrong describing it in English?) You can actually see a recipe of this drink at this site.

The entire hostel guys would line up and be served their Bhang drink which was gulped down deep. 2,3 - 4 glasses...

Picture picked from http://www.photoslagarde.com/


Everything is fine. No one does anything funny... until after 40 minutes or so. And all hell breaks loose.

Someone begins laughing and thats all he does on and on. Someone thinks the sky is falling. Someone just sits in a corner. Someone falls in love with every moving item around him. Imagine 100s of people, in their rooms, on the streets - students, workers ... even teachers - all so!!!

Its hard to describe how funny it can get... The entire city, elevate 500 m above sea-level.

I remember when we were kids at home, how my cousins ate the small pakodas (like cultets) not realising they were holi special and included bhang ingredients and for the adults. The next I remember the guys holding their pants in their hands on the road because they could not button them up after visiting taking a leak!!! And they were giggling. Both of them... and walking in the middle of the street. LOLz!!

7 Comments:

Blogger Chaichakri said...

It's strange that Holi is NOT celebrated among the Malaysian Indians.

Instead the holidays of Deepavali (Diwali) Thaipusam (Lord Muraga's Birthday) and Ponggal (Havest Festival) are the major Hindu/Indian festivals here!

8:01 AM  
Blogger Magnoy's Samsara said...

Great Recipe and you don't even have to inhale. Finally Bill Clinton makes sense

12:47 PM  
Blogger trangam said...

Kitjar: Holi is more popular in the North of India. That's where I recall it from. In South, its very mild. i think Malaysia has mostly people from South, hence Holi is not so popular. Of course the stories behind the festival exists across the country. The festival is not held in the same level.

Magnoy: LOL! Yes!

7:00 AM  
Blogger dhannydaeng said...

I REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR BLOG, I DID LOVE INDIA, I DID HATE IT AND NOW I AM STILL STRUGGLING TO UNDERSTAND IT.. THIS AFTER 15 YEARS OF WORKING THERE.
I ALSO APPRECIATE YOUR CONTRIBUTION AND CLEVER COMMENTS IN THAI BLOGS (YOU ARE ONE OF THE FEW)... IF U WOULD LIKE TO DISCUSS ABOUT... EVERYTHING HERE I AM.. claudio@dannyboy.ch

2:28 AM  
Blogger trangam said...

Dear DhannyDaeng, Thanks for coming over and your kind words. The way you feel about India, is probably like almost the way most Indians feel - love it and hate it ... very much!

6:00 AM  
Anonymous SiamJai said...

Well...

I hope you won't take offense, Trangam, but honestly this is one of the festivals that I will most likely give a miss. It's quite disturbing - I think I will stick with Thai Songkran.

When will you visit Thailand next time? :-)

11:42 PM  
Blogger trangam said...

No offense at all Siam Jai.. I am glad you visit. Lot of friends stay away from it... more because they hate the colours and all the water... so even here many stay home and just pray. But of course most do not!

My hope to be in Thailand is sometime end of this year... Though I was there for a 'lousy' 5 days last month.. officially.. which I tried not to mention... but now must write about it.

6:03 AM  

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