Wednesday 16 June 2010

Une nouvelle tini pour moi

New suit 2-cropThese past few days have seen a major festival in Orissa. The 12th  was Sabitri Amabasya, then the 3 day festival of Raja Sankranti.  Sadly to say, I have seen nothing much in the way of celebratory activities here in Rayagada, other than my landlady telling me she wasn't eating and Mrs P telling me she had spent the weekend back with the women of her family back at her parents house making sweets!
The first festival is for married women to pray for the well being of their husbands and is based on the legend of Sabitri who rescued husband Satyavan from the clutches of the god of death. The whole legend can be read in the link above.
The second is again a festival for women, this time aimed at unmarried ones. Beginning on the 14th June, the first day is called Pahili Raja . Swings are erected, sweets are baked, new clothes are purchased. In the Indian calendar this date also heralds the start of the monsoon.  It is interesting to note that Indian months begin in the middle of our months and finish in the middle of our following month. This is because the calendar is based on the agricultural cycle and follows the waxing and waning of the moon. So with the monsoon comes the start of the agricultural year, and just as new crops are planted, so young woman are shown off! - the swings of time, of the seasons and of life!
So I am excused participation in the first festival as I am not married. I'm certainly not being shown of as an eligible woman - so no swing, and I don't like Indian sweets, but purely coincidently I had arranged to pick up a new Shalwar Kameez from the tailors on 15th. I'd spotted the fabric some weekends back when my landlady and I were shopping - she was looking at saris, and as she browsed my eyes just happened across this set on the side of the counter waiting to get shelved. I loved the red colouring and pattern of the shalwar in particular. It was reduced to all of 550 Rupees and tailoring cost me another 140, so for around £10 I now have a completed new suit or as A puts it "une nouvelle tini"


  1. That is beautiful on you Sheila! I love the fabric too. You look very happy in your new outfit :0)

  2. Tx Molly, I like it. Nice cotton, so pleasant to wear. As usual happy - I once remember my best friend telling me that his young son said he liked Sheila because she was always smiling - it stuck in my mind as a trully beautifulthing to say and a very perceptive comment for one so young, he was probably about 9 then :)

  3. Lovely colours on you Sheila.

  4. I have just read my friend Clair's blog and realised the word I heard as "tini" from Ahmed on the phone is in fact "la tenue" en francais.