I had a pleasant time, though shot, in The Village of My Didi & JB (Jamai Babu), brother-in-law, in my brother’s lingo BIL, at Village named Annyasipur, accompanied with JB, Milan, Tamasa & Anubha, about 150 km from Khurda, Odisha, towards Kolkata;130 km on Highway and 20 km on good 30 Meter wide road.
My last visit to a village was 40 years before near Bhopal, of my friend Sehgal.
Well the village when we entered at about 10 MP at night, the entrance street for about 200 meter was decorated with beautiful decorative lights, music was in full blast, Pandal by the side of road was in finishing touch, for the Shri Ganesh Puja on 17th September. We saw three such Pandals with blazing lights & Blaring Music on the way to the JB-Villa.
The last 200 meter was kutcha path, and due to rains path was splashed with water logs, however we reached near Villa and the villa is on slightly higher plane so due to mud the soil became slippery, and car couldn’t climb.
We all got down and were walking very carefully and cautiously, JB aged 90 years, fit as fiddle, was also going up with us. He won’t allow anyone to hold to support him; however when we reached on inclined up path, His DIL (Daughter-in-law) just took his hand to support the climb on muddy slippery way, which JB refused and in next step he slipped and fell down, I was beside him so tried to hold him but I too trembled down. Luckily we were not hurt but were nicely soiled with mud.
It was nice welcome to village with soiled pants. The Villa has Five Rooms, Two Baths, and Kitchen cum Dine. Has Electricity and for water there is a well with hand pump.
Helps were already there, so we had nice bath then dinner. As journey was exhausting went to bed. Slept like dead log, got up at 5.30 AM. It was first time in last four years I deep slept without getting up at night. Felt refreshed.
Soon all were up, help came in, started washing whole house, as one this day Shri Laxmi Puja is performed at JB’s Village Vila, as per their family tradition. Well as a matter of fact all Puja festivals are performed at Village Villa only.
Tamasa the DIL and Milan, son of JB got busy with all sort of arrangement. Fresh Coconuts were being plucked for Puja and making of sweets for Puja. For Durga Puja the Mandap is on the back of house with big open space.
I had my Breakfast and Tea and went out to have a look & see.
The House is just at the bank of River Brahamani. The villa is on higher land covering 1500+ meters, having various plants and vegetation. The cultivation land is also nearby. They get four crops in year.
It was already 11.30 AM, Milan, nick name Betu and me went to nearby small town known as Bari to purchase tidbit for Puja.
The Puja of Laxmi was performed NOT placing any deity or Laxmi photo, but was performed with the Symbolic status of Laxmi, A base of sand wetted with water, and “Kunke Bhora Dhaan” (Small bamboo baskets full of unshelled Rice), Sea Shells and other assorted things.
We had the Prasad, later had Bhog. JB was busy with his Janta Darbar. And I was introduced as his BIL. All of them wanted to talk with me; alas I couldn’t, as I didn’t know Odiya.
After Sandhya Aarti we packed and started back at 6.45 PM. Reached back home at Khurda 10 PM. The whole 150 km way was strewn with Ganesh Puja Pandals with blaze of light & Blare of music. While way back we made a stop over to stretch near Cuttack, on highway known as RASGULLA POINT! Oh yes, there must have been at least 100+ shops on both side of highway, selling ONLY RASGULLA. HAD SOME AND PACKED SOME FOR HOME.
Today the 17th Sept, was jam packed with Three Puja, At Villa, the Laxmi Puja, in all over India Ganesh Puja & Vishwakarma Puja.
The date is also very significant for me, as I pay my reverence in memory of my father, who left us on this date at Noida,
The whole journey was exhausting but enjoyable.