Diwali

Love Hate situation

9:47 PM

Diwali falls on the 13th this year, and with it the lights, chocolate and sweets and firecrackers make their appearances in shops.
While I like Diwali and love the lights and diyas, and the festive atmosphere I abhor the firecrackers and it seems years after year I have less patience for them, and sadly they become noisier and noisier too. Perhaps because with each passing years we find ourselves living in area with larger disposable income and this year it’s a swarm of bratty kids who just can’t wait for D-day to burst these ridiculously loud “bombs”. As I am typing right now some of the kids who the rest of the time just push and slap kids at the kiddie playground are bursting a whole pack of said bombs down our building, with little regards for other people’s ears and of course no adult supervision whatsoever (they aren’t even supervised at the playground and look at you funny if not shout back at you when you scold them for pushing a 3 year old).
I like fireworks…the kind that do pretty lights and sparkles with minimal noise, I HATE these deafening useless thing that don’t do anything beside a loud kaboom that usually makes me jump in my chair. But if it was just one day, I could bear with it, the problem is that you are almost guarantee to hear them for a week, at all hours of day and night, keeping any sane human being tensed and jumpy to the point of being irritable. They are always done by kids who are never really supervised and in my old neighbourhood in Bangalore that meant the minute they were up at 6am! In Mumbai with most people living in apartment buildings, that mean less space to make them burst and far more echo noise from the kaboom, and far more tension for those who like me hates them, and we are apparently a growing lot judging by the articles in the newspapers these days.
The problem with these crackers as pointed in the papers recently is that there is no regulation, and selling defining bombs is not a problem, people are as always reluctant to ban certain things simply because it’s festival time and Diwali has been more and more associated with firecrackers over the year…let the kids have fun (who cares if they might lose a fair percentage of their hearing? Or worse), some think that putting a warning on the box stating that they should only be burst between 6am and 10pm is fine, but considering the fact that I observed a blatant lack of civism in this country over the year, you can bet it has little impact. The crass, inconsiderate people will not morph into decent kind people during the festive season and will do as they please with crackers just the same as they would with everything else anyway. The kind considerate one just seethe at home and horrify themselves with the realisation they can have murderous thoughts.
Today is the first day I am hearing these bombs, but it’s been a steady week of kids mock shooting themselves with “Diwali Guns” which might not be super loud, but have the knack of turning super irritating when amplified by the echo between the tightly packed buildings and the non stop shooting. I will not even go about how I think it is disturbingly wrong celebrating Goddess Lakshmi the Goddess of wealth and prosperity by pretend killing your play friends! (wrote about it last year).
What baffles me more and more is the fact that Diwali is supposed to be the festival of LIGHTS, not the one of noise loud enough to give your entire neighbourhood a dose of tinnitus and respiratory issues. It’s a festival during which you worship Lakshmi asking for wealth and prosperity in the year to come, and invite her in your home to stay for said year to come. Yet people seem to think it’s all about spending humongous amount of money not only on material goods and sweets, but on firecrackers…which simply put is just setting your money ablaze. And while yes a few flower pots are fun, and bright and festive, it seems I see more and more middle and upper middle class thinking that the biggest, loudest costliest is the best bet. In Bangalore I had neighbours that just seemed to be in a contest with themselves trying to top their previous year’s cracker budget and I kid you not it looked like they spend 10-20k on these every year! Sorry to say but with 20k I would rather take a vacation somewhere rather than seeing it go in a series of kaboom and sparks. If I were not I would rather spend this amount inviting my friends over for Diwali over a big meal, lights and a lot of happiness to share.
And I’d rather not insult Lakshmi by blowing up the wealth she granted me in the previous year in order to ask her to grant me with more the coming one.

DH and I agreed that this year the lot of crackers will be even more minimal than it already was in our home, first all the previous years we were left with a box or two of stuff we forgot to burst, and then Ishita is scared of loud noises, there will be sadly enough of that going on, and we don’t need to add to it.

4 comments

  1. I hate the bombs too. It's one of the things I addressed in my blog as well. In Amritsar all the houses are packed in tight and the sound of these bombs echos off of all the houses and it amplifies the noise. It sounds like gun shots going off and if you're outside it literally hurts your ears. I hate them and you're right, too many kids are blasting these all day long with no supervision.

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  2. The lack of supervision is baffling considering how powerful these are, we bought some one year, and the blow of the explosion just estinguished half the diyas around.
    After diwali newspapers write about quite a lot of accidents involving these, surprise surprise all the cases are of young children that got burnt, lost hearing or an eye in the explosion, and they were the one handling the crackers themselves! UGH!!!!!

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  3. I have heard a few bombs since we came last week. I was very surprised my son hasn't seemed bothered at all by the sound. I really do shudder to think what it will sound like Tuesday night though. I hope you and yours are blessed with health, wealth, prosperity and intact hearing this Diwali.

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  4. Wishing you a Happy Diwali too :-)

    Brace yourself for Tuesday :-) it will be LOUD that's the part of Diwali I hate the most, I don't know but year after year I have more problem with noise of all kind, I must be getting old. But then this flat is the nosiest we lived in with the one we briefly lived in in Bangalore in 2011, here it's the contrustion site next to our place that is really annoying, in Bangalore that was being ont he side of a main road. The positive with the construction site is that it's quiet at night, and they will probably done with the whole thing in a year.

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