This was the jist of all the messages that I started receiving on my cellphone since Sat evening. Its interesting - sms is a good way to keep in touch with people with whom you do not regularly interact. I received messages from some friends with whom I haven't spoken in a couple of months. But come Holi (or any other festival), and I am sure that I will receive messages from these friends. This is an advantage of being in India. You have festivals all around the year which offer you a good opportunity to send sms to your friends so that they know you remember them...
Back to the colors of Holi. Normally, I am not a Holi person, I mean I don't love playing the colorful Holi that is usually played in North India. In my childhood, I used to dread the H-day; On that day, we normally kept the front door of our home closed to prevent any unruly elements entering. But when some acquaitance or even a family member entered the home after having colors smeared all over the face and body, I used to literally shut myself in a room (sometimes under the bed) waiting for the signal from my Mom that all is well.
The first time I played Holi was during my engineering days. Even then, I was fooled into playing it; I was tricked by some trusted friends. It was decided that they would come to my place, we would use "gulal" to mark the ocasson of Holi and then spend the entire day eating and watching movies. Little did I know of their "other" plans. To cut the long story short - they came, they smeared pucca colors (pink and green) all over my face and body, we then ate and watched movies and they left after that leaving me all colored like a peacock. It took me the longest bath of my life(appx an hour) to get back into my "presentable" self again. On that day, I took an oath that I would never ever trust anyone on the H-day.
Yesterday, I played Holi again after a gap of almost 4 yrs. Even yesterday it was unplanned but then no one tricked me yesterday; I walked into the trap. I woke up yestreday morning to the loud noises of kids running all around the building parking area and common area throwing water and colors at each other. Some were even accompanied by their parents. It was a lovely sight, watching those kids having fun. It reminded me of my childhood days which were so different.
I was alone at my flat and was getting bored. So I decided to pay a visit to a good-old college friend's home. When I entered his building, he was barely recognizable - his face coated with different colors and he was busy "painting" others. Once he saw me, he shouted with joy - "Ek aur aa gaya"!!! Such was the delight on his face that I could not turn back and return to my place. So then, history repeated itself after a gap of almost 4 years. I was thoroughly painted - green and pink colors being smeared all over my face, hands, legs etc etc. Such was his expertise in using colors that even I was unable to recogonize myself in the mirror after he was done.
I would not say that I really enjoyed the ocassion - scrubbing myself for almost an hour to get back to my normal self was irritating and painful, but then it was a memorable ocassion.