Sunday, April 19, 2009
Vishu, Elections, Awards and ......ahem, nothing :)
Here's an update on what was going on on my side. I guess, it's going to be a long post.
First, after a long time, I got some time off 'coz of holidays. One because of Vishu.
Vishu is keralite's new year. It is believed that whatever you see the first time in the morningon Vishu day determines the rest of the year. It's called Kani. So, if you see good things, it is believed the rest of the year would be great and viceversa, if otherwise. Nice belief, isn't it? Normally, what people do is, they set up everything for kani on the previous day itself so that the first thing that they see will be the prepared kani and not some unexpected unfortunate sight, like a dead cockroach, may be :).
Basically, this kani includes, an idol or picture of Krishna, a lighted lamp, fruits, vegetables and a particular flower, kani konna, which we will get only during the Vishu season. These fruits, vegetables, flowers are supposed to indicate prosperity. So, if you see Sri krishna and the flowers, fruits etc as your kani, then it is belived nothing can be a better way to welcome the new year and the year will be great.
Parents wake up early closing their eyes and slowly move in the darkness searching for the room where this kani is set up and will open their eyes only when the place is reached. Then they will wake up their kids, 'N cover their eyes with their hands and will lead them to the room to see kani.
The next process is giving kayneetam, which means you'll have to give something to other people. It is similar to sakkat in Islam. Normally, money will be given as kayneetam. Kids will get money from their parents, relatives, grandparents etc and they are free to spent it, not much ofcourse. In the old days, land lords used to give clothes, food and other things as kani to farmers who worked on their lands. I remember the time, waking up and running around the near by houses with our gang to collect money. After that, a good feast will be prepared for the day.
I had a nice experience which I would like to share. This happened when I was around 7 or 8. One of our parents' friend was staying near our house. We used to call him Uncle and was really close to him. Or it would be better to say he was good with kids. He always did whatever we asked him. Once he bought a new car and went to see his relatives and came back a bit late, really tired. Seeing his new car, we ran around him asking to take as around in it. Our parents scolded us for pestering him and told us to leave, but he took all of us in his car and drove us around for a while. What a nice person he was. After marriage, he got transferred to some place really far from here and we lost contact with him. I have never seen him after that.
So, back to the story, once we went to get kayneetam from him. We used to get coins from everyone as kayneetam. But, that day something else happened. He gave a stack of rupees with a coin on the top, for each of us. We were surprised at the amount of money that was given to us. God! I thought, I was the richest person in this world. We took it all and ran back to show our parents "See how much uncle gave us?" No need to say, my parents were in a laughing fit and taught us the whole story of how it works.
Actually, the way of giving kayneetam is quite different. A number of 10Rupee or 100Rupee notes will be stacked and a coin will be placed on the top. You are supposed to take only the coin. Well, that was the process. But, what people usually did was giving the coins directly, rather than taking the pain to arrange the notes and putting a coin on top. So, we were new to this. This uncle saw us coming for kayneetam. He prepared the kayneetam for each of us neatly and gave us. Instead of taking just the coin, we took all of his money, I guess :). He might have shocked to see all his salary going to a bunch of brats.
Anyway, we got ashamed when we heard the story and went back to give the money. But, he won't take it. He said once kayneetam is given it should not be accepted back. So, I don't know what exactly happened. I guess, my parents might have given him the money back as a kayneetam to him. :)
So, that's the vishu story. No need to say, this vishu is nothing special now. Everything's only for kids, right? No kayneetam now, no kani now. I have lost belief in such things long time ago. So, it was like a normal day. But still memories are there to cherish. As someone had once said..."the good old days".
Now, the Loksabha elections had happened here last Thursday. So, that day was also a holiday. I went to cast my vote. I am not that political, but I think we need to exercise our vote, not that it matters much. Sashi Tharoor was one of the candidate here. You might know him, he was the former UN under secretary general. The main competition is between UDF and LDF. Not going into detailed analysis of polling. I know you might get bored, if you haven't already :)
After a long time. I got two awards from two of my dearest friends -PJ and Saranya . Thank you very much. Oops! forgot to mention the awards. One was Honest crap, sorry, Honest scrap by Saranya and the other was Excellent award by PJ.
Have a great week ahead friends...