The Day of Bhaitika: “Dinesh wake up,” someone screamed at my door, knocking. “It’s already 10. The sait for tika is at 10:30.” Oh, why can’t the sait be sometime at 2 PM, I thought, and, after thinking about the possibility for about 10 minutes, woke up. I had promised yesterday to myself that I would wash my hair today. Not that I am willing to do that very often but the dandruffs demand otherwise. There is this effective shampoo with me that when I wash my hair with it, dandruffs are gone for at least a week. It’s really useful for me. When you start a war, you want to finish it right through the end, right? That’s what I did. I went on for full fledged bathing which made me feel lighter. I am clean, ready for bhaitika. Continue reading
A festival blog: Celebrating Tihar (or Deepawali or Deewali)[Wagle with Thiar Bhai Tika 2005. From that year’s Tihar blog]
The live images of Nicholas Sarkozy talking about France-U.S. relations in Washington are coming on CNN as I am eating dal bhat while also talking to a friend. The talk finished, the food finished, the speech is going on. Sarkozy lauds the American ideals, the ticker on the CNN reads. He is also talking about the Atlantic alliance. I am hear him through the English translator. This beautiful girl is smiling and looking at me from my desktop. I wash my hands and brush my teeth. And while I am brushing, my sister comes from downstairs and hands me over flowers: makhmali and sayapatri phool. “Today is kaag tihar [the first day of Tihar the festival of light when the crow is worshipped],” she says. “I am inviting you for Bhai Tika.” I am almost taken aback by the invitation. I mean that was the last thing I had expected for the day. [Tihar is also called Deepawali in Nepali and Deewali in India.] Continue reading
Yes, Tihar or Dipawali or Diwali is a festival of lights and flowers. I generally enjoy the festival but when I compare it with Dashian, our biggest festival, I find Tihar a bit individualistic. Sisters put Tika to their brothers wishing them long lives. While doing so, they are also saving their brothers from the god of death- Yamaraj by making oil marks around brothers. So this is a sacred festival. Still I think this is individualistic. Not as much social as Dashain. Dashain is more social because whole family is involved in the whole process of Tika. Seniors put tika to juniors’ foreheads. Juniors go to other seniors in the village. That creates interaction in society and cements the socialite bond.
But in Tihar, each sister is worried about giving tika to her brothers. A brother is worried about taking tika from her sisters. Well, may be this is the hallmark of Tihar and that is why it is different from Dashian. All festivals have their own style and identity.
Dinesh with Tihar Tika
Email and myself received tika from Gita and Ambika just like in previous years. Kalyan went to Kaushaltar for tika with his sisters.
It’s been a pretty lazy day for me. Have nothing special to do other than the tika thing. They say no news is good news but now I am feeling like that is really a bad news. Anyway, from tomorrow, work will resume and I am excited about that.