Esperienza Exotique: Cold Food Festival

We go to the Xiamen region in China where the Cold Food festival is conducted this month. Perhaps the legends behind the celebration have struck a chord with the writer. When Maharaja Sibi hacked a pound of flesh from his own thigh to save the life of a pigeon in our puranas, the cruel kite who was chasing the victim was pleased with the magnanimous feat, shed its guise to re-assume the shape of  Lord Yama, and showered praises and … Continue reading

Eggs from Motu Nui

When you stand here at the edge of this crater, you can see waves thrashing on the craggy beach a hundred feet down below. There is only the vast expanse of blue all around as far as the eyes can see, except for a few small islets at a distance. Listen! Do your ears us pick those faint rumblings -prayers, spells, chants – from the hoary past? This is Orongo, a stone village and ceremonial ground in the Southwestern tip … Continue reading

Dum Maro Dum…The Hippie Trail

“Dum Maro Dum… Miit Jaye Ghum… Bolo Subha Shaam… Hare Krishna Hare Krishna Hare Krishnaa Hare Rama…” You either love that song like me or you belong to the generation which shook its legs ecstatically in tune with the number. The song was India’s answer to the hippie tradition which raged in the west fifty years ago. The hippies! Long flowing hair, uncouth garbs, on the road for hashish, cheap travel and promiscuous sex – the hippies were perhaps the … Continue reading

Festival of the Month: Come home Spurned Lovers

Every Valentine’s day I hear faint footfalls falling deep inside. I still remember that girl who mercilessly rejected my proposal as she took my softness to her as outright sympathy. She had reasons. The girl had a thick patch of grey hair that receded from her forehead, and that was too early for pre-degree students like us. She guided me out of my belief that mine was pure love. Every Valentine’s day, I hear weak footfalls falling deep inside. Of … Continue reading