November 2 (Fri) - Day 20: karwa chauth
Today is Karwa Chauth, the Indian festival celebrated by wives once a year to pray for long lives of their husband. We fast all day while cooking good food and avoiding the temptation to eat any of that good food. We can eat fruits, drink fruit juices and tea, but cannot eat anything that has grains or anything with salt. We do the puja (worship) in the evening and only then have our dinner. Nope, there is no festival for husbands to fast and pray for long lives of their wife. Not fair, I know.
Alok just emailed me a Yahoo Lifestyle article on tips for a healthy karwa chauth. I wonder if he would have fasted too if were here with me. Ummm, I doubt. Especially here, I doubt.
My sweetheart nanand bought custard apple shake and pomegranate juice from Mayur Pan Shop for saasuji and I. With three hours in my hand, I gotta wash my hair, get ready, apply mehendi on my hand, and go downstairs for the puja by 6.
Was so busy with the saree and mehendi, didn't realize the time. Shit. Just applied mehendi on the back of my hand, will do the palm later. Going down at 7 now. Saasuji must have finished cooking dinner and I was not there to help her. RUN!!
All the women of this residential community got together at the temple nearby (excuse me, ladies, where you all hiding yesterday?!?!?!), prayed to the Goddess Chauth Maata, recited some stories about this festival and the Goddess, and then went up the terrace to worship the moon.
Saasuji and I passed the sieve filled with wheat to each other ... and then gave some water from this tambe ka lota (copper pot) that we had used in the puja into each other's hand for seven times, said something like "suhaag se dhaapu, paani se koni dhaapu" each time and drank it. I think it meant something like "I want only my husband, not water".
Oh good lord, I must ask her tomorrow to explain me the purpose of this ritual again.
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