Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Do Talk to Strangers

So a little delayed in publishing this one but still wanted to share.

As I write this, fireworks are booming outside my apartment. Another pop comes from the street. Why are there fireworks being lit at 9:51 pm on a Wednesday night in September? Ganesh has visited Bombay for the past 10 days. Tonight he is heading to the sea. His energy will remain with the families who honored him but his physical form will disappear (or so we hope) into the sea. If you wanna learn more about Gapati and how it's celebrated in the state I live, you can read about it here.

Today we had a half day of school to celebrate the final day of Ganpati.

A friend and I went to the suburb to the North, Juhu, during the early afternoon to see Ganesh immersions. At this time of day, there were mostly small Ganeshas being brought down to the beach from their homes.

Families invited us to join their prayers and songs. They shared their sweets with us too. 

A sandal broke.  Mine were sticking to the sand too and I didn't want my precious Havaianas to break; so I slipped off my flipflops too. We walked barefoot along the beach that was covered with Ganeshas, dirty diapers, and empty backpacks. The human impact was balanced by snails, hermit crabs and shells. And Mom, because I know you're reading this, I've been feeling great so no need to worry.

People stopped to tell us the story of Ganesh just in case we didn't already know. We did; it's been shared before, but I appreciated their wanting us to truly understand the celebrations around us.

I made sure to find a Ganesha that had washed back up onto the beach. I knelt down and whispered in my wish into his ear. I'll take his help to remove any obstacles in the way of my wish.

When we left the beach, the energy was just beginning to build.

Driving back into Bandra, I was reminded again of all the smiles and invitations we got from strangers to participate in their celebrations which reminded me how important connecting with India is. How inviting everyone is, even to me, a complete stranger. Time to share some highlights before I wind up sounding even more cliche than I already do.

A few highlights (which really means photos I like accompanied by some Ganpati music)...

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