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Festival memories and traditions, old and new | Vidya Sury, Collecting Smiles
I woke up this morning and lit the lamp, and had my conversation with the divine as usual. As I sat with my tumbler of coffee, warming my hands and waiting for my son’s call, my mind rolled back to decades ago when Diwali was a big deal at home. Ours was a joint family and we went all the way with traditional celebrations. A week before the D-day, my uncles would sit together and make lists of things to buy, argue over the menu of sweets and savories. They would decide who should tackle which list and get going. There would be gifts to buy for the family and relatives who visited, new clothes to choose, ingredients to source for all the exotic things on the menu. Because imagine not including one new thing each year! The day before Diwali would see my Mom managing the kitchen—my aunts were quite happy to let her do it. I understand now that not only was she a great organizer but one who had a solid sense of humor. She had this knack of making everyone feel they were doing what they were doing voluntarily, which is why I guess she was …