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Maa Aschen

Posted: September 6, 2020

Reminiscing the festive season of Durga puja , awaiting a miracle in our times of “new normal.”

It was mid-August! Last year around this time they had already dug up holes and the framework had almost started taking it’s shape. The uber couldn’t enter a certain narrow lane cause Durga Puja pandal work was in full swing. And I would grumble!! Uff Moha Mushkil!! (Kya musibat hai)

Last year this time some of us would have already started the Pujo shopping or at least they would have planned:
Dewa newa kena kata shere nee
(Let’s get done with the gifting)

Some must have been already checking ‘Make My Trip’ app for the cheapest air fares, for the short trip during puja vacation. They are the ones who would always grudge:
Durga Pujor somoye Kolkatay thaka Jay na. ”
(It is impossible to stay in Kolkata during Durga puja)

The festive fervor of the season

By now the girls would have already planned over a plate of vegetable chop in the college canteen
Shon Ashtamir diney eki rokomer saree porbo. Gariahat kobe jabi bol? “( Let’s wear matching saree on Ashtami. When are you free to visit Gariahat market)
“Aar shon oi notun restaurant ta khuleche na, Zomato te review darun. Sashtir diney jabo. Thik ache? ”
(The Zomato reviews of the new restaurant is good. Let’s visit on sashti)
No Panji (Bengali calendar) would be required to find out the dates.

The rush in New Market and Gariahat would be indicative
Pujo asche

The traffic each day while returning back home would be unbearable and the most commonly used abuse would be
Koto Paysha loker kache
(People have so much money)

Pantaloons and Big Bazaar would be overflowing with shoppers during the Independence Day sale. You could end up meeting half your neighborhood in the store and happily nod each time when asked
Arey! Pujor shopping naki? ” (Are you here for Puja shopping)

A few like me would eagerly wait for the four days off during Durga puja. But not this year!!

I miss all of it! The crowd, the traffic, the chaos, the people!! I miss the 100 day countdown on my social media feed.

This year we have been hit by a dual crisis. The global pandemic and Amphan which has left the city devastated. Life has changed drastically for all of us. Need I mention more?

I have mostly adopted to the “New Normal.” This year without much resistance. But my heart breaks when I realize there would be not much celebration this year.

I remember during my childhood when India needed 36 runs to win from 6 balls, I would still be hopeful and keep my fingers crossed for some magic to happen.

The spirit of the festival has become muted this year.

Yet we all are hoping against hope that there would be some magic.
Maa Aschen

#DuggaDugga

First published here.

Image source: Unsplash

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