Saturday, October 22, 2011

Parting of the Protima

Well, I had originally penned this verse almost 2 years ago. The trigger was a rather evocative picture from the Durga Puja celebrations in Calcutta, captured by Shuboda on his website:

The reason this came rushing back to me earlier this month was, because I had ventured out on my 1st Pandaal hopping spree this year with a bunch of fellow enthusiasts (aptly spearheaded by Simi). We covered 3 Pandaals and I must admit I was completely floored by the elaborate idols and decorations. But what pleased me to no end was the sumptuous spread across the Oh Calcutta, Hangla and Sweet Bengal stalls at the venue. The exquisite, spicy sting of the Jhalmuri, the heavily layered indulgence of the Mughlai Paranthas and the delightfully crisp chicken chaap did their part to contribute to a divine experience of the culinary kind! Also, there is this inexplicable thrill of eating non-vegetarian food (legitimately, mind you) on a Puja day... It almost feels like you're flouting the rules *and* getting away with it : ) Anyway, before I digress and turn this into a food fest, here's the verse I was talking about:

After the telltale conch
Sings victory
And the rich vermilion
Proclaims glory;
With evil vanquished
And a job well done,
Yawns replace trumpets
As the mortals return
To scooters and tiffins,
To life's mundane call.
For, come Monday morning
Even the mighty fall.

There's also this picture that I had taken at one of the Pandaals in Juhu. I was given to understand that it was Rani Mukherjee's Pandaal (...No, I did not spot any Bollywood stars there!). But this is the sort of elaborate set-up that I was talking about.