Was it a dream, being in Kohima on Gudi Padwa day, 2013…? The day a unique object was ushered upon this Earth- the Angami Gudi!
It was a promise we made to ourselves…when we left for Kondoli, this day we shall not celebrate without creating anew that beautiful symbol of Marathi culture, called the Gudi, a lovely, खेळकर, playful little girl with such a sweet name. A smooth wooden shaft, adorned with a marigold garland, a streaming silk खण fluttering in the morning breeze, sugar गाठी , topped with a bough of fresh green mango leaves, finally crowned with a copper कलश ! A marvelous object d’art even a child can assemble, and like Love, can be possessed by the rich, the poor, the miserly, the generous, the kind, the wicked- there is a gudi artist in everybody...! It’s a one day wonder like the beautiful brahma lotus, the saussurea obvalatta flower that blooms but a day in a year! To be dissembled at sunset, the sugar sweetening the kids’ evenings!
Missus had an idea that we would celebrate New Year’s Day away from home, and pucca ghati that she be, carried a खण and a कलश , expecting that the other components would be readily available in any corner of the North East.
(a) the marigold garland was luckily available at Chandmari, the Bengali New Year, Nobo Borsho being round the corner, (b) the sugar गाठी , it was too much to be expect, hence dispensed with, (c) mango trees were aplenty around our host Neilie’s home and finally (d) the wooden shaft, that proved tough, but that’s what made the day and the year for us and posterity….
Earlier night, our friend Neilie had promised to arrange a nice round pole, three-fourth of an inch in diameter. He was quite excited about the whole affair, determined to produce the back-bone of our gudi, if need be from the forest. Alas, a smooth and sufficiently long pole was nowhere to be seen, till it occurred to him in a flash, Angami that he happens to be- the Nahor (iron wood) pole-makers at Lerie, who fashion this crucial component of the Angami Naga Spear! Neilie and his son Shuro left on their bike hurriedly and appeared like a dusty apparition half an hour hence, carrying a whole 7 foot Angami spear! With the familiar red goat hair frills dancing merrily in the morning breeze! A lone shaft was unavailable, but a spear could be procured any day no…?!
Let the gudi speak for itself, for a picture is eloquent, and this exotic picture, infinitely so! It’s a testimony to the unique culture we have developed in our country! This, we can assure ourselves, is the most beautiful unpretentious gudi that can ever be fashioned, by the hands of your truly!
|NEILIE MUST HAVE TAKEN A HUNDRED SNAPS!|
AND HERE, THE BEAUTY OF KOHIMA:
|NOTICE THE HOLLYWOODIAN "NAGA HERITAGE VILLAGE" SIGN- THE VENUE OF HORNBILL FESTIVAL|
|AT FOUR AM|
|LOOK GREAT- SOUND SWEETER: TETSEO SISTERS|
Chandmari reminds us: every city and town in the North East has a Chandmari, a Paan Bazaar and a Bada Bazaar!