Damaal DumeelNovember 10, 2007
>Eyes jolt open at 5 am, thanks to over enthusiatic 500 wala loving neighbour. >Morning cracker session with Appa & Varsha, all o...
>Eyes jolt open at 5 am, thanks to over enthusiatic 500 wala loving neighbour.
>Morning cracker session with Appa & Varsha, all of us still in pyjamas.
>Realise we look damn weird in the road, especially considering pakathaathu (next door) mama is wearing pattu veshti and looks as fresh as a daisy, while I'm still in morning 'eh-whats-happening' mode. The mama looks at us, holds up a wala and says "chumma adhuridhile!" We blink. He is disappointed.
>Paati dumps a tablespoon of gingelly oil on my head.
>Appa switches on TV, and surfs channels to find some channel that has some spiritual type programme running.
>Halfway through his search, he finds KTV putting songs from Veerasamy.
>Me, Varsha, Appa are glued to the television, laughing our guts off watching TR give "romaynteec look" while my mother's BP starts shooting through the roof (Pandigai-mbodhu paakavaendiya program-a idhu? Chi! Channel-a maathu!)
>After full oil bath and wearing new-new clothes and all, I feel especially shiny. Deepavali effect.
>Go to Perimma's house for lunch. Nicely have full south Indian pandigai meal complete with paal-payasam. Mmm.
>Afternoon, family gossip session starts. I try to listen about what this one particularly notorious member of the family has been up to but lose track after sometime, end up dozing off.
>Wake up at 5.30 pm. Find that the family discussion has veered off to "indha kaalathu pasanga".
>Amma assigns me diya-lighting work. This job, I like.
>7.00 pm. Oh yeah. Damaal Dumeel time. Almost 20 of us - akkas, annas, mamas, mamis, perimmas, perippas, athimbers, aththais gang up on the terrace.
>Rockets. When a particularly enthu cousin of mine lit a rocket, it went up for around 10 cm, turned left, entered into my neighbour's window and burst there.
>We stare in shock, wondering if the entire house would just burst into flames, like in the movies.
>After one minute of silence, my uncle gives one loud guffaw and all of us fall about laughing.
>After all the special vedis, flowerpots, chakras and all are exhausted, we troop downstairs to burst the waalas.
>Suddenly we remember that match is happening today. Everyone stops midway and gathers around TV.
>We watch India lose.
>We decide to dedicate all our waala bursting to the Indian Cricket team (For what joy, I still don't know)
>All cousins take turns bursting red-forts and lakshmi-vedis, making people walking on the road wince every 2 minutes.
>Get down on the road, lay out the 1000 waala, make 3 autos & a whole bunch of people stop. I light the matchstick and show it to the waala and immediately take it back. It wasn't lit. I do this again 3 times until my dad asks me to just light the matchstick and drop it on top of the waala. I try to light it again, nothing happens.
>Auto guys get pissed. The Aunties on the road are just scared. The Uncles are not sure.
>I finally get it right, the spark comes on. And I run.
>3 whole minutes and a lot of noise later, my family cheers. One mama also claps.
>Deepavali finally comes to an end at 1.30 am.
>I dont know what happened next but I remember waking up the next morning with a big smile on my face.
Hope you had a Happy Deepavali as well.