Diwali a time to be celebrate, rejoice and spend time with family and friends. A time to let bygones be bygones and start afresh with a clean slate.
Diwali is a four day celebration, a festival of lights, devotion and victory of good over evil. But like all traditions and celebrations it is always difficult to maintain them if you are overseas, a place where festivals such as Christmas and Easter over shadow all other festivals. It is here that it becomes more important to introduce into the younger generation the importance of such festivals and traditions. Often than not the Diwali falls on a week day, if this is the case we have to defer the celebrations to the evening and postpone meeting and greeting extended family and friends to the weekend as Diwali is not a classed as a public holiday. Most of us have to attend work and school. Further more with an enormous trend of nuclear families, major Hindu traditions and festivals can be easily forgotten if we allow them to be.
Our Diwali starts off with preparations a couple of weeks ahead, making savouries, mithai, drawing rangolis and writing Diwali cards. I made one special mithai this year ,please see this link: boondi.
Included of course during the preparations and celebrations is the shopping spree, be it to purchase a new sari or dress, or simply purchasing gifts and mithai for family and friends.As diwali approaches we await eagerly for the Laxmi puja, followed by the kali chavdas, the Diwali day and of course the New Year. Meeting family and friends and dining together makes the festival even more joyous. Of course not forgetting the wonderful visit to the temple for the ankot dharsan and the grand finale of all the firework display.
Diwali for us was a quiet affair but still an enjoyable one. We look forward to a new year and wish for all our family and friends good health, wealth and happiness .