There are so many kinds of Holi revellers:
1. SPORTS ENTHUSIASTIC HOLI REVELLER
The first is the kind that gets gujiya, water guns, water balloons, gulal, permanent color into place a few days before the event. Then he gets his Bahadur, kids etc to join in filling the water balloons the night before D-Day , stored in a huge plastic tub at vantage point. Talk about preparedness. Such a reveller also has attack points, back-up points etc charted out a few days prior to D-Day. Commonly found on the terrace, scouting possible victims.
2. GULAL KI TILAK (SIMPLE COLOR POWDER) HOLI REVELLER
These guys dress up in the cleanest of clothes, meet up with like minded Holi celebrators in the colony park where they put gulal politely on each other, feast on garma garam chai and pakoda while telling their enthusiastic kids “No beta, don’t play with water”. Yours truly belongs to this category. Commonly found in – yeah you got it – the colony park with a cup of tea.
3. NATURE ENTHUSIASTIC HOLI REVELLER
Chandan tika boxes, herbal colours etc. I even met one who insisted on spraying ittar on me. Very classy, very expensive – and to my middle class brain – very pretentious. Commonly found in the rarified locality of the super rich and the arty types.
4. GANDI VAALI HOLI REVELLERS : THOSE THAT PLAY DIRTY
Kid #2 is proud member of this fraternity. These guys buy the most pakka (permanent) colours, actually buy cartons of rotten tomatoes, trays of eggs and a pichkari to fill water balloons. This is arsenal and they are going to war. One car is converted into the war car, seats and other sensitive to color stuff is covered with polythene sheets and padded with towels. The boot has buckets full of the water balloons, the car is loaded with all the ammo and with sufficient dhin chak music (This year it was Lucky Oye, Rock On, Emosanal Attyachar and the likes) that blare their evil intent, they sail forth looking for like minded warring opponents. The fond parent gets a shock sometime at 4 pm when “Maa Ka Laadla” comes back with black, blue, purple and metallic blonde permanent colours painted all over him and stinking of rotten egg. I always try to convince myself that the egg and tomato must be doing some good to his skin. Commonly found in – the car of course.
5. LET US DISAPPEAR ON HOLI TYPES
My Kid#1 is a former No. 4 type fella who has now joined this fraternity in his old age (:D). For the past 3 years, he stocks enough booze and snacks and he and his wife simply disappear for the rest of the world. I am instructed to tell any one that they have gone out of town, on the strict warning that they will not allow me any food or booze if I tell on them. “I my wife and my dogs do not play Holi” he told me in that oh so superior way. Wrong thing to do! I kept wondering “What if I told people they were hiding inside????” It is too tempting LOL. Commonly found in front of the TV holding hands sipping wine.
Of course how can one not write about Bhang??? Holi means Bhang right? I mean what kind of barbarian does not know of the close connection between the two? Holi is spring and fertility. In fact the first colours were made with flowers and pollen. So for any kind of great “fertility rites” to happen you need to lose inhibitions. Any way, people were exhausted after the harvest … and needed a high to get going I guess.
I would like to have the bhang shardai, but Kid#1 plays spoil sport. Sigh! Just had it once in my life. Man, I was in a trance after that. Quite unsurprising that its known as Shiv ji’s prasad. The damn thing takes you to alpha state without much effort!
Next Holi, I am gonna beg plead with every one who does not know Kid#1 to please gimme some.