I took a look at the photos of my childhood. The notorious, fussy and stubborn child grew out to be me. The memories of winter in the terrace, basking in the sun, staring at the sky and imagining the clouds to be dragon, cat, dog, cotton candy or anything that I saw can never be returned back. Memories of my pet, Flash, playing with him and running around so that he doesn’t bite off your trousers, cannot be relived.
The Dashain excitement was the best moments. Mom, dad, my sister and I used to go for dashain shopping; together. Then dashain homework in the terrace, in the warm sun on sukul . The main day of the Dashain was just amazing. You finally got to wear the new cloths that you bought especially for that special day. Then we visited relatives, taking tika and jamara. The most exciting thing was dakshina and then later comparing it with my sister or friends. How can I forget flying kite? Well I didn’t know how to fly a kite but my dad did. It was just fun holding the latai. The fun moments with my cousins playing kitty and jutpati was the most awesome time of the year.
Then there was Tihar; the lights, fire crackers, hanging garlands of flowers everywhere. I still remember all members of the family cleaning the entire house early in the morning on Laxmi Puja so that Laxmi; goddess of wealth could bless our family. It’s said; Laxmi visited the cleanest and brightest house. So, little footsteps were made with the paste of red vermillion power from the entrance door to puja kotha. It was so fun looking at my mum making those footsteps and being careful not to step on it.
At night, my sister and I lit candles everywhere in the house. We went to the terrace and stared at the brightly lit town and admired the fire crackers in the sky. It would be like the entire town had come to life. It used to be the most beautiful scene ever. My favorite part use to be eating the sweets after evening puja though.
Then there was bhai tika. My brothers came over and we used to have the time of our life. Yes, we did have to stay hungry before sahit but we did sneaked fruits and sweets and had it. The long process of keeping tika and giving sagun was done. The rest of the day we just enjoyed playing kitty (kind of card game). It was just really a good time of the year. No wonder these are the most auspicious festivals of Nepalese or Hindu.
But as said in the beginning, these are just memories which cannot be relived. It’s again this time of the year, Dashain holiday. Now, it’s just a holiday where I stay locked in my room with laptop and movie. No more basking in the sun, or excitement of shopping. Actually I’d forgotten about shopping this year, just a few days before, I was like, “Oh, it’s Dashain. I have to buy new cloths.” Then I told my dad. He gave me some money. My sister and I bought a dress after trying few cloths and that was it. No more together and family shopping. Things are so different now. It’s not fun anymore. The feeling we had when our little lips said “Dashain” and the wide smile in tiny lips disappeared. People moved on. Cousins and relatives left country to study or work abroad. Dashain just lost its essence. I don’t know why, maybe because we grew up or the people who were supposed to be there to have the real meaning of this festival of family and togetherness are not there to fill the holes of love and care.
Maybe that is what change is and moving on means accepting the changes even though it’s like taking in poison down your throat. Now, it’s all a memory. The excitement, fun and essence just lost its way in the journey of life and everyone got separated for the path was different for everyone. The festival of togetherness just started getting barren every year for me.