Half-made clay idols.
The smell and feel of new clothes.
The smoke of camphor and incense.
The swish of my mother's starched new cotton saree.
The sindoor bindi on her forehead, some dusted onto her nose.
The nip of a winter chill in the morning breeze.
Getting together with friends and family.
Giving and receiving gifts.
Hopping from one pandal to another.
Lavish lunches for guests at home.
Exchanging furtive glances with boys who were checking you out.
That's how I spent my Pujas through my growing up years.
That's what I yearn for even today.
Used With Permission