Niagara Falls, India!

I have been visiting several spots around Bangalore with my mother. This place I discovered, thanks to a friend. Then I looked up more information about this weekend spot that I wanted to visit. Although we are at the peak of summer, the Kaveri river, which lends its water to the falls, is gently flowing….

Happy Solar New Year

Now several people in a major part of India are oblivious to the fact that south India is made up of five states (Telangana, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Kerala) with distinct languages, cultures and celebrations. While Ugadi marks the new lunisolar year in Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh and Telangana, the same is celebrated as…

Thanjavur Thalayatti Bommai

I made a passing mention of the Thanjavur Thalayatti Bommai on a post I put up a few day ago. Instead of leaving it to your imagination, why not show you what she looks like? Well, this is the one my mom owns. She’s been around for over 25 years (or longer, I just remember…

Bobbling Around

Bobblehead dolls have been a part of our household now since I can remember. Fondly called “Thanjavur Thalayatti Bommai” (meaning “Tanjore Head-Shaking Doll” in Tamil), we’ve had ones who dance and ones who just bobble their heads. But when I found some at Jodhpur, it took me by surprise. We found these made using paper-mache (the…

The Winds Of Change

Welcome to the first Indian festival of 2012. India is an agricultural and religious nation, and the year starts with Makar Sankranti, or Pongal for us in Tamil Nadu. Makar is the Sanskrit variant of Capricorn, and thus the celebration  marks transition of the Sun from Sagittarius to Capricorn. For us Pongal marks the first harvest of the year. We worship…