Dream Vs Reality
Days are nearing for Ganesh Chathurdhi, people are flocking in for donations (Chanda’s). I usually reject them without any hesitation, and kids go away with great disappointment
. However I am grown up man with few reasons and also memories to share.
When I was in childhood, I always had a fairy tales for 9 days of ganesh chathurdhi . Even three week before the ganesh chathurdhi, youngsters in our gully use to discuss about the cost, decoration and plans for ganesh mandap. We kids somehow use to hear some broken words and unfilled sentences through some means and get excited about festival season. The day before the festival we use to reach the place of mandap and assist elders in bringing small goods for construction of mandap. Sometimes they use to ask us to get some tools from our home; we use to feel proud like full air balloon. Soon after reaching home to grab the tool, scared look given by mothers punctures everything. Somehow we use to make our presence felt and give our small hands like squirrel helping lord rama to construct the bridge. Till the day of festival they never use to allow us to watch the idol, however they used to give a chance to glance the idol which was covered with dark cloth. Then we calculate the length and breadth in terms of our heights and have deep discussion as if we have seen a seventh wonder. Strangely we gave less importance to beauty of the idol rather than height.
Though there is only one day off on the festival, but we always feel that we had 9 days off. Because all throughout the 9 days we always discuss about the idols even in class rooms and plan our visit to watch best idols in the town. Soon after coming back to home in the evening, we scribble down home work briskly and then start our journey to watch idols in the town which begins with small get-together. At each idol we pray god closing eyes, but I don’t remember what I used to pray but I do remember that my next step is doing situps.
I guess those sit ups would surely have some medical reasoning. But people believe that those were done to get rid of sins. Later our concentration shifts to prasadam and theertham. Soon after crossing the street the discussion begins about the taste and will continue till we reach next idol. After coming home our stomach could not accommodate any more food and with utmost difficulty and to avoid strange looks of my mother I used to adjust food like a grain in gunny bag. These fascinations has made us to think beyond and developed interest to establish our own ganesh idol in 6th standard. My parents are conservative and did not allow me to waste time, but my strong will made them to give a nod partially. We got 50 rs from each family and bought idol. The resources we had would be enough to have some decoration. Then prasadam would be prepared by our mothers after requesting them and doing homework within time. Out of curiosity we also used to go for chandas or donations. Few people used to give scary look as if we have done a crime. (Although now am giving the same look for the kids who are coming to my home). Few people out of generosity use to give 5, 10, 20 Rs. We use to get a coconut for 5 Rs or less than that at that time. So 5 Rs also a big money for us, like that some how we established idol near to our home. We used to wake up and spare some time near the idol before going to school and ask my friends gradma to look after it. By the time we come from school we use to see the ballons and other riboons were gone and the shelter we made out of leaves and small sticks used to be blown away by the wind. Out of great difficulty we used to construct them again. The sad day would be when the rain comes; as we made shelter with small sticks and leaves the shelter would easily go off. Somehow we had managed it for 5 days and then gave to the people who are organising mandap in big way, after 9 days they used to dip our idols in the sacred water along with theirs idol.
Then after I was busy with other work, could not spare time for the ganesh pooja. Days has changed and so as my ideologies. Now I like simple and modest festivals. I feel ridiculous to have 100 ganesh idols in one small village. Festivals are made to bring all the people together. Why cant all the villagers has single idol and celebrate. It is very economical in all aspects. The most important thing is all can dance once during the last day, Just imagine when all 10,000 people of a village starts doing theen mar together, so thrilling isn’t it.
However apart from philosophy there lies the reality. May be in the past I might have done some sin during pooja, which made lord ganesh angry. Because of which the vehicle of lord ganesh (Rat), is punishing me during my animal experiments. I am so scared to handle them some how am managing these days. But still some times rats jerks when I am handling, it makes my cool heart fiercefull. The blood starts gushing into my arms and palm, forcefully making my hands to hold the animal firmly, eventually the rats starts giving weird sounds (qeeek qeeek). Crazy thing is that rats deliberately do weird things like turning its back away from our palm , briskly rotating its body when we hold the tail, sometimes rats will avoid handling by standing with two hind legs and observe or give a look that am taller than you people. But it does not know that no matter what gimmicks it (rat) do, we will still handle them and finish the work irrespective of weird sounds.
May lord ganesha does not keep this in mind and advise his vehicle (rat) to support me through out of my work. It would be very cooperative that whenever I am holding an injection, it has to lay down and turn its dorsal side towards me. It would be really good that when I am measuring paw volume, it has to think that am washing the legs in some sacred holy water. It will be more exiting when rat opens its mouth watching the colour drug as if it is ready to drink fruit juice. It will be even more exiting when the animals behave exactly like what the master think. May be these are paranormal activities; it would surely happen in films like avatar but not in the real materialistic world. Thinking of reality always makes me feel depress, especially we day dreamers freelance in dreams.. Any way thanks to the PhD for helping me to look back in the past and recapturing some nostalgic moments. May be if my animal works gets completed successfully, I would surely do sit-ups for Rattus novorgicus to show my gratitude..