2nd October, 2014 – Maha Asthami – the day when the celebrations and revelry reaches its zenith. Kumari Pujo at Ramakrishna Mission, Pusphanjali and Sandhi Pujo all today. But this year due to peculiarity of the Pujo timings, Asthami according to the ponjika had already started on the evening of Saptami. Asthami would end by 8 am on 2nd October. I wonder why such absurd timings?
Nevertheless the morning began with a bang. I took part in the pushpanjali at Old Farm Area Puja, Kadma for the first time! It was an amazing experience. Earlier on Saraswati Puja I have offered pushpanjali but never to Maa Durga. I was up by 5 am and lazily found my way out of my room. Uff! It is a real work to get up in the mornings before dawn. Later, mother had prepared her thali and I happily took my Nikon D5100 DSLR to take a few snaps. I would have loved to take out my camera on every day and click pictures but I was afraid to take it in public lest it be snatched. Fears aside, today I had my parents with me. Chanting the shlokas with the other people and then offering the flowers to the Goddess was a moment to be relished.
Later in the morning we went to visit the Bagbera Buddha pandal that I talked about earlier. Near the Tatanagar railway station and beyond the Railway Colony we came to Road no: 4, Bagbera colony. What a design! Such innovativeness. The work of the artisans truly paid off. But the ground where the temporary structure came up was a really congested one. The pandal could not express its magnificence in such a cramped surrounding. Still it was one to watch out.
Did I mention the bhog? In the morning right after the pushpanjali I hurried off to Kadma Utkal Durga Puja pandal and bought two bhog coupons worth 100 rupees each. The price is inflated because today the bhog is a bit special. Afternoon saw us relishing the bhog. It was not the usual khichudi and payesh stuff. Instead themalsa contained pulao, chhola, mihidana, payesh and a sobji. Their special bhog on Asthami was really special and it was worth of every rupee. My family of four – I, mother, father and thakuma could not even finish the bhog and so it was kept for dinner.
Remember I had praised about the weather – how wonderful it was. No rains or clouds in vicinity to mar the celebrations? Well today the rain god tried to revert all the praises I had sung in his favour. Waking up from a long afternoon siesta I saw that the evening sky was clouded. Shit. It will be raining again on Asthami like last year. I thought that it had destroyed all my plans for today. And so it rained. Furiously. Torrentially for about an hour and then the clouds receded leaving behind a cool and a breezy weather which helped to subside the increasing October Heat. Jo bhi hota hai acche ke liye hota hai.
So later in the evening I and Rishi again went out. This time to visit the pandals of Agrico and Sidhgora. Here again my mother’s Galaxy Y was used and so bad quality pictures. Now I will not write further but let my images guide you.
On the endnote we both again went to Delhi Darbar at Sakchi and had our secret dinner – we did not tell our parents. I had butter naan and chilli chicken. Yumm!
Tommorrow Navami. Another writeup.
Postscript – Due to the ever increasing size of the image files I have given just the small version of it. To get the full version of it please mail me at – firstname.lastname@example.org and I will be happy to provide you the larger and better version.