Monday, January 29, 2001

Saraswati Puja, sans Gota Sheddho and Kuler Ambal

Today was Saraswati Puja - Sri Panchami. Like many other festivals it is celebrated in Nepal on the same day as in Bengal, with equal fervour and austerity. So much so, one sees community puja pandals in different localities ( to that extent it is different from the other festivals like Dassain and Tihar , which are celebrated more at home ). It was interesting to hear, the concept of "Bagdevi Aradhana' being explained on FM this morning. I don't think they would do that in Calcutta. In the evening, Nina took Jaya to a Puja nearby - dressing her up in a red Saree and Ghagra. Jaya didn't agree tho' to Sandip's suggestion that the colour to be worn on Saraswati Puja Day is yellow ( Basanti ) - but, then Red ( Rato ) is also the favourite colour in Nepal. Nina missed her Kuler Ambal ( which, no doubt, Ma will make up for in the next consignment of goodies from Cal ) and Sandip his "Gota Sheddho" ( a kind of cereal-less khicuri with bolied whole vegetables ) - for which he used to 'religiously' go to the Math ( Ramakrishna Mission ) at Mumbai on Saraswati Puja. As he always maintained, his connection with the Mission has been more gastronomical than spiritual.