I don’t, as a rule, enjoy festivals. The preparation for the festival is alright – yesterday, even as I slaved over the stove for four hours straight, making the goodies that, as Carol pointed out, look like life forms crawling around your yard, but melting in your mouth before settling in your hips, there was a purpose. Today, there is a big void – ok, Diwali is over. Now what? I ask the same question after every occasion – deadline is over, now what? The blog post is written, now what? This is usually accompanied by a sinking feeling which, depending on the time of the month, could lead to nausea.
Part of the reason for the discomfort is the dissonance between beliefs and habits. With my gradual evolution into an agnostic of sorts, these ritualistic festivals annoy the heck out of me. Yet, having been used to the celebrations for four decades of my life and the customs themselves being reflective of a rather old and thriving culture, I can’t let go either. Thus, when I am doing it, I am wondering if I am being a colossal hypocrite, while if I choose not to, I feel like the insensitive breaker of a chain that has been built over aeons. And then that annoying voice says “chains are to bond” and another says “the chains are ornamental”. Like Leonard tells Sheldon “It must be hell in your head” – It is.
Browsing through my contact list on my phone to wish for Diwali, I find that I have a total of 14 people to wish, and my phone wishing took all of 14 minutes. My significant other often teases me that I am a social butterfly because I am in almost constant communication with someone all the time – by email, by WhatsApp or texting, and rarely, by phone – but I just realised that I was constantly in touch with only these 14 people. I don’t know where I am going with this analysis, I hadn’t thought it through. But there must be a point somewhere. If you find it, let me know.