Sep 17, 2015

Gowri/Ganapathi Festival

Happy Gowri Ganapathi to all my readers!

We dont have the tradition of Gowri/Ganapathi at my in-laws. We of course celebrate it but the tradition of vaina (gowri) and getting ganapathi home is not followed. But my maternal grandmother's house still follows both the days. They observe Gowri at home and Ganapathi with family as a whole in one of the konkani temple in Thirthahalli. I enjoyed both the days all my childhood. Buying new glass bangles for Gowri was so exciting. But unfortunately never tried to jot down about the steps or take any pictures. Thanks to Whatsapp by uncle shared few pictures this time.

Gowri or Vaina is worshipped by Sumangalis. So vaina is compulsorily worshipped on the wedding day as first Vaina if the boy's family follows the tradition. In this puja coconuts are decorated in a particular way and the puja is done. Each Sumangali in the family has to do the puja for certain number of coconuts every year (5,7,9 etc) The number of coconuts can be increased if the person has taken it as a owe but should continue to do the puja for that number of coconuts thereafter.

A special red thread which is meant for Gowri festival is bought and 5 black beads are inserted and put to Gowri as a mangalsutra. Sumangalis tie that thread to their karimani after the puja. Typically this thread is worn until it comes off or change it during next vaina after the pooja.

After the puja, vainas are distributed to all the Sumangalis present during the puja and also to near and dear family members. My grandmother (Amama) had a tradition of preparing kaiholige with the remaining vainas. 

The picture here is of my maternal uncle's house where all my aunts and their daughter-in-laws get together every year to perform this pooja. Our priest will be present to do it. The picture of goddess is Gowri and I love that idol !

Once the pooja is done, like any other festival a feast of yummy food is served to all the members present. Today here I made dalithoy, seemebadnekai (chayote) upkari and patholi in banana leaves. A simple dinner but patholi gave a festive touch. I will be posting the recipes for each of the item. Though very simple ones I definitely would like to document it.

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