Happy Navaratri to you all. How is the house-hopping and sundal-binging coming along? We are in the thick of the celebrations. We had the first round of visitors yesterday, more will trickle in today and tomorrow. This year we shook things a bit and gave a new look to our golu, thanks to the toys organizer purchase from Ikea early this year. Hari labored and built a Ganesha temple. Ram has a super hero themed corner. The kids’ art and craft over the course of this year is also on display.
What I like about golu…
- Family bonding time and memories being made. Da and I huddled in a corner to problem solve for golu padis – what to use? how to build? where to set up? how to make it different? Hari and Ram brainstormed on their little projects for golu – what to create? how to create? with what to create?
- Discussions about ommachis at home. How did Vishnu turn into a fish (Matsya)? who is the guy that Krishna fought with? Do bad guys also have avatars?
- Friends who will make the effort to learn new songs and grace our house with soulful music. Something so profound and divine about closing our eyes and getting lost in the recitation of the slokam as a group. One of those rare times when we are able to let go and just be.
- Listening to Srichakra Raja – one of my favorite songs, particularly during golu which brings out the femininity in you. Gives immense strength, makes you surrender, and leaves you teary eyed. You realize your own insignificance in the grand scheme of things?! Feel very blessed to have learnt to dance for this song.
- The iterative nature of the tradition. There are always lessons learnt – things that worked and things that didn’t. With that comes the opportunity to tweak and make it more meaningful with every passing year.
- Visiting friends’ golus, and enjoying the dolls on display. What with Indian arts and crafts exploding with creativity and brilliance! Brings the dormant little girl in me to life. Ram and I eagerly take the sights in with glee.
What I do not like about golu…
- Unanswered and May Be RSVPs. How is the host supposed to plan and prepare for the event? This is one of life’s quandaries that can do without shades of grey!
- Rushed visits. Not desirable but understandable given that other things do not remain constant because of the golu season. So we juggle and do the best we can with what time we have.
- Getting stressed about food shortage, wastage and variety. What to make? how much to make? There is only so much left over sundal one can eat!
With that enjoy rest of the Navratri in your own way. I leave you with a few pictures of our golu this year.
Hari’s Pillayar Kovil. The picture does not do justice to the details – the mooshika, the curtain, the ladoo.
Ram’s super hero themed corner