Its gone such a long time since I last posted something. I have been quit bussy with language classes, traveling around Kathmandu Valley and henging with friends. So i thought now i would share something with you all again.
Nepal consists of many different ethnic groups with different traditions and believes. Because of this there are so many festivals and holidays here. One of the festivals is called Tihaar and is the second biggest festival. Vilde and I got to observe it very closly which was very fun.
Our great nepali teacher Samjhana told us about the Tihaar festival in details so thought I would share with you what I learned.
This year the festival lasted for 5 days. They (Hinduists and Buddists) never know for how long it will last because they follow the luna calendar.
1 Day (01.11.13): Kaag tihaar (crow tihaar)
The first day of tihaar they worship the crows, because they are their messengers. The People give them food and yellow and red powder.
2 Day (02.11.13): Kukur tihaar (dog tihaar)
Today they worship the dogs. The dogs are thier securety gards. If they dont have a dog of thier own some worship the street dogs. Today they wash them, give them tikka and give them food including meat.
3 Day (03.11.13): Gaai tihaar (cow tihaar)
This day they worship the cows in the morning. They give them tikka and give them flower necklace around their neck.
Later in the day, they worship Laxmi, the goddess of wealth.
Here you see some ladys cleaning a building with thootbrushes. They do this because Laxmi will come and look at the houses and see which is the nices one and see which house she will enter. If she enters a house it will bring much fortune on the family.
Today is also quit special because they have something called Bahilo (a singing and dancing program). Some years back Bahilo was only for the girls. However today it is for both the girls and boys. They go from house to house, and sing and dance. They then get sel roti, fruit or money. If there, are bigger groups more organized by school or locals, they will be invited to some houses and entertain them for 1 or 2hours and then get a bigger sum of money and fruit.
Vilde and I got the opportunity to see and kind of participate on this Bahilo dancing and singing shows. Devendra, a former Hald student, whom we are going to work with for a short period of time at the schools he teaches at, included us when his school was going around. It was so interesting watching the students dance and sing.
Devendra explaining the songs to Vilde
4 day (04.11.13): Goru tihaar (ox tihaar) / (mhapujaa worhip (only for newari people))
This day is given to the oxes. This is because they used to and still are used in the farming. However today there is also used more technology.
mhapujaa, is the belief that there is a God in every part of your own body. This day is then also used to worship yourself.
Today there is also something called “Deusi”. This is dancing and singing just like the «Bahilo» on the third day. Before it used to only be for the boys but now in the modern day they just mix them. Girls and boys go together. This is the same as on the third day. They go from door to door, entertain and get something for it.
5 Day (05.11.13): bhaai tihaar (this is the main day and it is the brother tihaar)
Today the sister in the house has to give tikka to all her brothers. They give tikka with seven colors. She also gives gifts, dry fruit and other foods. The brother will do the same back to his sister. If you do not have a brother you can “make” one by giving tikka to someone who does not have a sister. This then makes you two brother and sister.
The tradistional food for this festival is SEL ROTI. Nepali families make 200 or more because they eat, give when children come and entertain and when they get guests. WELL my point is that VILDE my teammate who loves to cook, make wird deserts, and always wants to try things out found out that she wanted to make SEl ROTI. So the last day of Tihaar we tought we would join kind of by having sel roti. Here is the prosess:
Vilde has crushed a lot of rice, making it fine flour:
Ready to be deepfried in oil.
The first try.
The result of the first one.
Vilde, happy as can be continuing making more sel roties.
Then ready to eat and drink nepali tea.