Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Ganpati at home

We start planning our Ganpati at home months in advance. I am planning and me and the help are executing it. The first time it started with joy, love, bhakti/belief. Then it was once h,appy,so let us do it again. The years passed and the confidence grew. I learnt from my earlier Ganpatis. So we improvised each year. Years back, a friend had heard all my apprehensions and asked me what I wanted from the Ganpati. What I wanted the guests to experience? How did I want my family to experience during and post the event? The apprehensions were never about the work involved for the Puja, they were always about the people. People means the ones who are family really. The bro, sis and sis in law are the biggest support system. My parents are the rock solid support who are there through out to be, to advise and to handle should anything need handling. The friends and relatives who visit for the Ganpati have been coming for years. The numbers have increased. We now have children's friends and their parents in the guest list. We organise bhajans on the evening or the last three years. Its tough to get guests to sit when there are so many Ganpatis to be visited. Some enjoy the prayers and chanting but want to do finish more darshans. My Mom Dad have organised their personal Maharaj/cook from Dhanbad. He comes every Ganpati to cook amazing food. Now over the years, we serve only home cooked meals and snacks. The good cooking and the morning Puja hawan/yagna does wonders to the taste. The food is completely relished and the cook manages the quantity and the quality successfully.
Family looks forward to all my friends visiting and now the children's friends. Its a packed house and very enjoyable.I am still partial to relatives from Dhanbad. Mom, Dad, bro, sis and sis in laws ensure that every guest is looked after. There is a lot of festivity and cheer. Its also about meeting some people annually at home at Ganpati. The bro s friends who were young boys, come as newly weds and soon with kids in tow.  The children and husband are the ones providing rock solid support. As the stress of the planning starts two months in advance, my couple of close friends have to bear the brunt. Along with the cleaning of every single shelf of the house, I do a lot of raving and ranting about people. As the physical cleaning progresses, the inner cleansing is on. By the time that is done, we are on an upswing. The mood is upbeat. All things fall into place easily. This year the friends were so prompt with their responses to the invitation. I was impressed. Two days pass surrounded by people and love.
 During uthhapan/Visarjan puja, I am quite teary eyed and choked. This time it felt like my son had visited me for a day and now he is going back. I feel very bad that I did not spend time with HIM. His coming was such an occassion of celebration that I totally forgot about the cause of the celebration. Every year, I promise myself that I will look after Him better or more when he is with me. That I will pray to Him. Then I am lost in serving people. Its because I do not see Him in them. I do not see God in people. For me, the God is my idol. But He is smart. He ensures there are so many people and I look after them till for me God is One.

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