Monday, September 24, 2012

Ganesh cometh and Ganesh goeth!

Having been totally excited about Ganesh and his comings and goings last year, not so much this year. Mainly as I came to realize that all the wild dancing, drum beating and party like behavior accompanying Ganesh on his last journey to his watery grave was not a manifestation of religious fervor but alcohol!!!

Ganesh arrived to Vista and was seated in his brightly decorated temporary home made from palm leaves, festooned with streamers and lights. He sat in glory for 3 days and nights.
 What I love so much in India is the constant contrasts, life out in the open. In the afternoon, on this national holiday by the Vista clubhouse there are folks dressed in their best, stopping to pay homage to Ganesh on his birthday, making offerings and pooja. Also at least 15 Vista teens engaged in a huge game of cops and robbers haring this way and that as they try to either catch or dodge one another. The younger kids in the pool screaming and laughing as they splash and play. And me the victim of Anand my trainer.

There's none of this behind closed doors, in the semi darkness, in a shadowy church type praying. This is in the open in front of all and sundry. A lot can be learnt here!!

So Ganesh gets a birthday feast of fruits, sweets and other delicious snacks.....
So do we............ Each day of Ganesh stay in Vista there is prasad on offer. Sweet or savory.....Wills doesn't's all pretty yummy!
 Talking a stroll out of Vista, Simon and I came across this Ganesh. A pandal had just been erected across a street. It's a holiday so not much why not indeed???? These kids were mighty proud of their Ganesh and insisted of being in the photo.

And then the parade to take Ganesh to his resting place under water. This was the procession at Palm Meadows where I was playing tennis. Did the beating of drums, chanting and music put me off my game??? That's for J, J and C to conclude!!! I was taking these pics on my i-phone from the tennis court, hence the bit of fence!

When I got back to Vista, Ganesh exit was underway. It's a very slow business, the truck has to pause every 100 yards for a spot of drumming and drunken dancing and revelry. As we approached 5.00pm, would the yellow Indus bus get into Vista before Ganesh and his party got to the main drag and blocked the entrance? Just!! But the bus did get stuck on it's way out - luckily we are the end of the line and no more stops!!

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