Any festival is a festival when its in India. Burning man is a wussie compared to Vinayaka Chaviti of Hyderabad.
Millions of crazy young drunk fuckers dancing to loud (also called Teen Maar) drums and other such noise making devices, marching towards a big fucking lake to dump (called Nimajjanam) more than 10000 idols of a funny looking fat elephant God.
This God is not someone who you 'fear'. This God dude is your dude. He is your buddy. You play with him, you drink with him, you eat with him and you stand on him. He is fondly called Ganesh in Hyderabad.
We Indians never appreciate the courage and determination of our Politicians, Police and Babus. We are so used to disliking them.
Imagine this. You are a policeman equipped with nothing but a Lathi (Most of them dont even have walkie talkies) dealing with more than a million drunk young men. And you will never be thanked for a job well done.
Like most of the Indian Miracles, this festival is another fucking thing that 'just happens'. 6000 fucking teams pouring out from different streets, passing through narrow lines, crawling under High Voltage lines, accommodating all communities (like diwali, Ganesh too is contagious and non religious), you know!, to dump this God. Crazy shit. Indeed.
So, I was invited by a colony of friends (or friends from a colony) to be their guest on their nimajjana day. After the usual Grease poll and Teen maars we all went to a friends place to sit on their daba. The custom is to auction the 'laddu in Ganesha's hand', before Ganesha heads for the dump ritual.
I asked Zee to participate in the auction. Come back with the laddu. Is what we told him.
He came back, glowing and with the laddu.
Holy fucking shit!
(I have a picture of that laddu. :) It is the most expensive dish I ever ordered.)
P.S: The highest bid for a laddu this year is 9.02 lakhs. Hundreds of laddus went for a bid thats higher than 1 lakh. This is just Hyderabad. And this government tells me that there are only 61000 millionaires in India. :)