Thursday, 11 September 2014

Ganesha drums and Autumn symphony

I had to smile, when my blogger friend, Arti, My Yatra Diary, asked me to write a guestpost on her blog on the Ganesha festival. That was going to be fun:-) And it was! Thank you for hosting me, dear Arti. 
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Ganesh Visarjan: Close up with Ganesha
" It had been 4 years since I had been religiously covering it. 
But not this year. This year, I wanted to pass the baton to someone else. 
I wanted to hear the story but from the other side. 
And... it didn't take me long to circle who that someone else would be. 

How about my dear blogger friend, Eli @ Expat LivAn expat journalist
and writer from Norway living in Mumbai since the past two years?  
I thought. It would be nice to hear what she feels about the Ganesh 
Chaturthi festival. Being a regular reader of her blog, I already knew 
her love for India and that she connected with the festivals and cultures of 
the country at the same emotional level that I do. Thinking thus, I immediately 
set off to shoot her an e-mail requesting if she would like to be a 
guest on My Yatra Diary... and pen down something on Ganesh Visarjan 
and the festival from an Expat's point of view?

And voila, there she was, in the midst of flying in from Goa and 
flying out to Europe, all excited to make some time and honor 
this little corner of mine. I simply couldn't stop feeling grateful and 
thanking her for this kind gesture of hers.

So on that note, there we go -- sit back, relax and read all that the 
festival of Ganesh Chaturthi means to an expat, from an expat's point 
of view -- rest assured, Eli is the kind of writer who shall leave you 
wanting for more! 
******
When I was invited by dear friend Arti to write about Indian festivals in 
general and Ganesha in particular, I could feel a huge smile spreading 
on my face. Because even long before we moved to India over 2 years ago, 
I had a vision of the Indian festivals. Colorful, noisy, wild, crazy, fun 
and with crowds of happy people drumming and dancing all over, 
all the time. I was not disappointed. The festivals here are all that 
- and so much more. 

I go with the flow, from festival to festival."


You can read the rest of my guest post here: on Arti's amazing blog My Yatra Diary.

____________________________

So, one day I am right there. In the middle of a wild crowd in Mumbai. Surrounded by people who are drumming, dancing, laughing and together we are moving like a human winding train towards the water. I can feel the heavy drum beat. As I stretch back, I feel raindrops on my face. I start to laugh because it all suddenly feels so crazy, loud and intense. And here I am -  right in the middle of it. This enormous crowd of people, all here to follow their Ganesha to His last journey. The immersion. And the drums do not stop. At all.


And then the next day I am somewhere else. I am walking on a path in a green forest. No drums. No people. No cars. No sounds. Just quiet. I can hear my own heartbeat. Lots of trees. The colors are changing. From green to yellow, orange, red-ish and brown. An Autumn symphony. And yet, the drums are with me. Somehow. They do not stop. Not even here.







A short week back in Bergen, but already today I am moving on... To where? Stay tuned...:-)

Ta ta! 

24 comments:

  1. I just love how you connect us readers through your words Eli...The post on Ganesh Chaturthi is wonderful to read and I'm so happy you could see the emotional connect in our festivals :)

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    1. Awwe, that is so kind Naba- thank you so much:-)

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  2. My, what a contrast that must be going from an Indian festival to the Norwegian countryside. What fun! You sure are good at adapting to whatever setting you're in, Eli. I always enjoy seeing India through your eyes and hearing about Norway and Greece, too, of course!

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    1. Thank you dear Cathy:-) So happy you enjoyed, and always so happy to see you here:-)

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  3. I always feel good whenever I read your blog... I feel so close to home. Thanks for your words. :)

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    1. Thank you sweet Sheethal - you kind words make me so happy:-) Hugs

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  4. I so admire your involvement with the festival of Ganesh Chathurthi. There's so much warmth and sense of belonging in this post, Eli. Loved it!

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    1. Thank you so much dear Vinodini. Hugs

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  5. I love the contrast, Eli. This year, I almost missed the drums of Mumbai. We had them here too, but in the distance!

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    1. Thank you dear Corinne. Yes, the Mumbai drums are something else right...

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  6. Loved reading this blog. Quite inspiring to blog about such topics :)

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    1. Thank you so much. Happy you are visiting.

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  7. Ur post on Ganesh Chaturthi gives a feel of awesome celebration in Mumbai and brings back memories. Is there any city that can do it better than Mumbai?

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    1. Thank you Vishal... Yes, it is quite awesome...

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  8. Dearest Eli,
    Quite a long introduction to part of the post and than some. I did visit your guest blog and left a comment. Shocked in a way to find out those statues all end up as lake polution... WHY?!
    Have a safe trip and hope you enjoyed this short stay in Bergen.
    Hugs,
    Mariette

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    1. Dear Mariette. Happy to see you here as always...Bigs hugs

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  9. Eli lovely post on Ganesh Chaturthi. My comments on Arti's blog!
    Love your energy girl, on the move and making each place your own...spreading smiles!
    Waiting to here about your next destination!

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    1. Thanks a lot dear Aditi. your kind words make me so happy. Hugs

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  10. I could so relate too your description about Indian festivals. They are so full of life, laughter song dance noise , a lively mixture. Your post brings some beautiful memories.

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    1. Awww, so happy to hear that dear Rajlakshmi. Thanks a lot. Hugs

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  11. You are fast becoming a pucca Mumbaikar, dear Eli :) Loved your post on Arti's blog, left a comment there. Those autumn pictures brought me back here, beautiful in their simplicity and quietness.

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    1. Thanks dear Beloo. So happy to read your kind words. Hugs

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  12. Eli, I loved how you took us on a journey through the sights and sounds of Mumbai during Ganpati visarjan to your walk in the forest in Bergen. What a stark contrast! Can't wait to hear about your next adventure.
    PS: Interestingly, I've done a Ganpati retrospective on my blog too! It's the festive season. :)

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    1. So happy you loved it! Thank you for your kind words

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