I intend writing series of blogs on this biggest festival like the last year. First of such blogs is Diwali 2.0. You may wonder why this title?
There used to be Diwali of my childhood. Preparations used to start almost one month in advance with the commencement of 10 days of Dussehra holidays. Shops would start selling crackers and every evening, children would play with crackers. Of course, in my Dussehra blog, I already covered the Ramlila part.
Post Dussehra, wait for Diwali would become almost unbearable. Visit to Chandni Chowk in old Delhi to buy special delicacies like Karachi Halwa ( Meghraj, Chainaram Halwais) and other desi ghee sweets from famous Ghantewala and Kunwarji was most exciting! Then there was a mandatory visit with friends to Sadar Bazar for buying crackers, where rates used to 80 to 100% lower than the neighbourhood shops! Some more adventurous of the lot would also make flower pots ( anars) at home.
On Diwali there would be abundance of sweets, delicacies not only in-house, but also exchanged with neighbours and relatives. Firing of crackers would continue till wee hours of the morning. This was not all! Crackers not burnt on Diwali night were burnt over the next two nights and sweets would continue for many days after Diwali!
In comparison, Diwali of today is different. Sweets are taboo and crackers are no-no. Rather people prefer going out for a quick hop over to Dubai or Thailand! Greeting is exchanged on WhatsApp and lighting of ghee and oil diyas has been substituted with convenient electric candles and diyas !
Oh pollution and diabetes and stress ! Why have you changed our favourite festival Diwali into Diwali 2.0?