celebrating ganesh

To good beginnings

There are times in my life when I plan an idea to the T then, just like how a sudden brake on the bus can send you flying across the aisle if you aren’t holding onto something, a simple change can blow it all to dust.

A couple days ago we got our slot for the second dose of vaccination, now this time wasn’t the kind of hand waving and spell conjuring it was the first time around. The process right now is smooth as a charm but from what I’d heard the effects were anything but smooth. As we got back from the vaccination center kids in tow, the husband was already needing a rest, I would feel the effects only 12 hours later on the morning of the next day. Luckily all it took was a paracetomol and some shut eye to calm those twitching eyes and burning muscles.

I had big plans for chathurthi so the vaccine side effects weren’t part of my agenda, luckily though we’d crossed the worst of the effects and I mustered up the energy to make it happen.

Over the years the religious significance of most of our festivals has been lost in translation, I no longer know for sure why we make kozhukattais, why do we immerse in water? I wouldn’t even try to explain them to the kids. Preferring to keep it simpler, as something we enjoy doing and Ganesha is known to love, or so I hoped but the barrage of questions is still on so I’m not getting off easy on this one.

They happily moulded little hands, feet and the trunk to make two little ganesh idols from clay. This year was one of the smoothest kozhukattai making I had since I began making them in 2011. I had already sorted it all out in my head –

  • Thenga puranam – coconut and jaggery filling
  • Pidi kozhukattai – rice flour cooked in jaggery and steamed
  • Ellu puranam – sesame seed with jaggery and
  • Ammini – the little salted rice flour balls steamed and tossed in oil, mustard seeds, and curry leaves

I love the excitement with which the kids wake up and head to the breakfast table on festival days. The joy with which new foods and experiences are sought after amazes me every single time.

All this is of course within the walls of our homes, outside we are all waiting with bated breath to see what effect this will have on the so called third wave that is already here, if some are to be believed or will be here soon. Depending on which side of the conversation you are.

Then again, Ganesh is said to be the God of good beginnings. What are we if not people of faith and hope, we will carry the promise of the science behind the vaccine and crawl towards life as we knew it one kozhukattai at a time.

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