The Festival of Lights

A very Happy Diwali to you all!

Diwali.  The festival of lights.  It is my favorite holiday of the year.  I love the festivities, the lights and the yummy foods.  Imagine Christmas in November (or October due to the date being based on the lunar calendar).

One of my favorite things to do during Diwali (other than eat yumminess) is a Rangoli.  It is traditionally a colorful pattern, created with a dyed powder, on the floor near the entrance of a house.  During my years living in Kenya, my mom and I used to create a large one every year.  We used to start about a month before Diwali and it would take us a week or two to complete.  Around Diwali, families would visit their friends and family to wish them a Happy Diwali and a Happy New Year (which follows Diwali).  The Rangoli was considered the pride of the host family and it added a sense of festivity to the festival of lights.

Here is a very small one I did this year.

Rangloli Full

Rangoli close up

Cities around the world also host Diwali celebrations that include food vendors, shops, fireworks, and entertainment.  We were fortunate enough to attend one this year.

Dhoom Machale Group

An incredible circus themed dance performed by the Dhoom Machale Group.  It was complete with a carousel, clown, jugglers and more.

Traditional dance group

A traditional South Indian performance.

Participant playing a game

A participant plays with his friends after his performance.

Silk Scarves

Jewely for sale

Lehenga Clothes on a rack

The festivities are not complete without some shopping.

VIP Cafe

I take that back.  The festivities are not complete without some refreshments in the VIP Cafe!