Heat, Summer reloaded and a Diya8:57 AM
The monsoon is reaching its end. The last few thunderstorms and short heavy evening showers are all that is left. With them comes the much dreaded October heat which makes Mumbai an unbearable place to be in again. many other areas of the country are seeing a decline in temperature signalling a pleasant transition into Fall and eventually Winter. I myself remember our days in Bangalore and how Fall meant enjoying cooler evening on the terrace of our old flat...those were the days.
In Mumbai, I feel pretty much robbed of Fall altogether. In Bangalore I only had to mourn the fact there is no leaves changing colour, but it wasn't much of a loss, I don't think I ever ached for Fall back then the way I ache for it now.
You see, Mumbai is pretty infamous for its year round high humidity, and once the clouds are gone, the sun is at liberty of turning that dampness into a kind of steaming hell that will make you sweat buckets instantly. What's more, is that weather changes happen ina very drastic way in the island city. There is no transition or not much at all. It is hot and heavy and unbearable one day and the next the monsoon established itself with a downpour that will cool everything down by several degrees. Once the monsoon leaves the heat comes back overnight leaving you wondering what happened in the first place. By November end it goes from humid and hot to dry and cool just the same way, leaving you fishing your sweat pants out because you woke up shivering in the shorts you wore to bed the night before feeling too hot. And, of course, Summer makes its comeback in March in just about the same way.
This lack of transitional period is what usually gets to me more than the fact it is green all around still in October. It has me look longingly at the pictures of pumpkin patches, long sleeved t-shirts and light knit tops and other autumn wear. Right now nothing indicates we will ever have cooler days again, and the memory of gloomy rainy days with me lounging around in my yoga pants a mere two weeks away is fading fast. Did it really happen? Was it really that cool, cool enough not to have the AC on at night? Really? And more pressing, will we have a Winter? Was the one from last year an illusion?
These are the matter this insane heat is making you question not once, but twice a year in Mumbai. To make things even crazier, the newspaper announced that last Monday has been the hottest day in September in the past 60 years. I was sapped out of energy, just about ready to sleep a barely 9pm that day and the next was no better, but brought some relief with an evening storm.
Climatic tales aside, Ishita's school had a Diwali market last weekend. Kids from older grades were raising fund for their class activities selling little crafts they made for the upcoming Diwali festival. I love these sales, I participated in quite a few growing up as they are pretty much an institution in Switzerland. Kids bake cakes and cookies to sell to raise money for a big filed trip they are about to take, and when I was 15 we sold crafts and food at various markets with my class to raise funds for our big London trip. I have a soft spot for these sales, I know how exiting they are for the kids and we ended up buying painted candles and this really cute electric diya :
They made them cutting out crafting foam in the shape of a flower and decorating it with stickers, and pasted a plastic cup in the middle to hold a button battery, to activate the light, you simply place the little LED pin provided with the dia on top of the battery. This is a nice little craft project one could do at home too. They also had old CDs on which they glued a little tea light candle and decorated it the same way with glitter paint and stickers. I am sharing these ideas for those who are going to have a Diwali party home and are looking for ideas to engage their kids in the planning and decorating. We are heading to Lucknow this year, so I won't be doing anything home. But this is definitely something to remember for next year.