Celebrating the Holi festival

The Holi festival was on last Saturday – and even though we were warned about the possible consequences – we went anyway – wearing some nonessential clothes…

As the CNN website says… “Holi is regarded as one of the greatest festivals, as important as Dashain and Tihar or Dipawali. Since more than 80% of people in Nepal are Hindus, Holi, along with many other Hindu festivals, is celebrated in Nepal as a national festival and almost everyone celebrates it regardless of their religion, e.g., even Muslims celebrate it. Christians may also join in, although since Holi falls during Lent, many would not join in the festivities. The day of Holi is also a national holiday in Nepal.”

“During Holi, people walk down their neighbourhoods to celebrate Holi by exchanging colours and spraying coloured water on one another. A popular activity is the throwing of water balloons at one another, sometimes called lola (meaning water balloon). Also a lot of people mix bhang in their drinks and food, as also done during Shivaratri. It is believed that the combination of different colours played at this festival take all the sorrow away and make life itself more colourful.”

In other words – everyone runs around throwing bags of colored water – or even more popular in the main Thamel district of Kathmandu – is that everyone walks around with handfuls of dry colorful pigments – and come up to you and smear it over your face, etc. Thousands of people are so colored – and this picture is just one group standing around during the middle (muddle?) of the day.

And – for the chronically curious among you – yes – it all washes off easily with a bit of soap and water …

(Remember to click on the photo for the full image)


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