End of term, Secret Santa, Karthigai Deepam and so on…

Yesterday I walked out of class knowing I was free from studies for three weeks. I do not have to worry about articles waiting to be read, discussions to prepare for or case studies to review. I also realized while one term was done, there are seven to go. The enormity of what I have taken on hits me. Yet it is strangely exciting.

This week at work saw me being part of a Secret Santa exchange. As a group of us huddled and discussed details, I could sense the childlike nature in us come out. Being excited about the secrecy part. Promising to keep people guessing and such. In the grand scheme of things, this is such a non event yet, it is one of the things I have come to love about my job.

Today is Karthigai Deepam. I woke up today promising myself I would light the traditional oil lamps and place them at the door before I went to my bro’s place to feast on appam and adai my mom has promised. Looking at pics my co-sister sent to me this morning I was reminded of the smell of appams frying and the plates laden with earthern lamps (Ahal vilakku) glistening with oil waiting for us to light them. Clad in finery we would carry them to the terrace and the veranda and light the first few with matchsticks and then use the lit lamps to light the rest. Taking care not to spill oil on the pattu pavadai we would then gently place them on the compound wall occasionally shielding them from the wind with our palms to keep the flame lit. The image of of lamps lined homes is something I will always cherish.

Looking back, more than the meaning of the festivals we celebrated I remember the warmth and the feeling of family that these occasions created. The food, the traditions, the new clothes. As much as I try to recreate some of it for myself here, it pales in comparison to the images I carry in my head.

With that note, Happy Karthigai to those who celebrate this and Happy weekend to the rest of you.

7 thoughts on “End of term, Secret Santa, Karthigai Deepam and so on…

  1. Wishing you 7 more terms filled with learning, and a Happy Karthigai. I don’t know why, but we celebrated it yesterday (may be, by mistake!). I missed the row of lamps that I was so used to growing up, but reciting Skanda Sashti made up for it. Left me feeling content, confident, and with a strong sense of faith.

    @Suman: No mistake. Some people do celebrate it a day earlier. can totally imagine you reciting the shlokam and feeling good about. Amazing how we create mental pictures of people through their writings.

  2. We also celebrated it yesterday Laksh. I made appams, pori and adai. Happy Karthigai to you and everybody in your family.

    @Madhu: Why no karthigai recipes on your blog?

  3. Suman: Some people celebrate Karthigai on the nakshatram day and others when the Annamalai deepam is lit πŸ™‚

    Happy Karthigai Laksh! Wish others there too..
    This is predominantly a tamilian festival; having been here for ages, I suppose we adopted it too. Anyways love seeing all the mamis in madisar, love lighting the lamps & eating pori, vadai (no appams/adais @ my place!) . Though this year, I did not participate in the festivities. No mamis around for me to see them in madisar either.

    Wishing you the very best in the rest of the 7 terms. They will be over before you know it and you will emerge out as a management graduate! πŸ™‚ Hope to get a huge treat for that πŸ˜‰

    So, what are you getting for the person assigned to you? πŸ™‚

    @Apar: Thanks for the background on the festival. Definitely a big treat when I do finish my program. I got the guy a book. “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle

  4. Laksh,
    First of, thanks for the award!! :–)
    Second, Kudoes to you for finishing up your term with great success. :–)
    Third, Happy Holidays, enjoy the time off from studies :–) And Happy Karthigai Deepam. I remember this festival at home. All the vilakkus in beighbours patios. It used to be beautiful!

    @SK: Most welcome and thank you too. Karthigai was and is still one of the festivals I love.

  5. Hey, when I read the first line…i was like ditto!! Even I’m free for three weeks now and another semester over!! Yipeee.

    Happy Karthigai to you too. Hope you enjoyed it..and with mami there…must be a really good one.

    @Shalu: Hope you are enjoying the holidays. Any travel plans?

  6. I am learning about lot of festivals here; never heard of this one adn thanks Apar for a bit of context.
    Laksh, congrats on the 1 over and good luck for the 7 terms. I can almost see your corner office with ‘blast of a view’

    @Shy: The corner office dream is enough to keep me going I think πŸ™‚

  7. Like Suman, we did it on Thursday too…we lighted the lamps etc…I meant to blog about it and forgot completely..you just gave me a reminder, I will do it today I think…

    @UL: Waiting for your karthigai post πŸ™‚

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