Holi: Coming out of the Diaspora
Holi is my favorite holiday and time of the year. Holi is a holiday in India that celebrates the coming of spring and end of winter. There is a fire in which a ceremony insues for in which people leave behind anything behind as they come into the new year. The next day everyone throws colors celebrating spring. Things turn around for one day, elders hide as the children try to throw colors at their teachers and family members. I have celebrated in the U.S. a few times with my friends, but by far this has been the best holi of my life. I never realized how much of a diaspora I was in before celebrating here in India, I had celebrated with friends. To be surrounded by my community, listening to music, dancing, and throwing colors was an experience unlike any other. We went to an inclusive school for children of low income backgrounds and with disabilities. I was able to play some of my hindi tunes for the children. They as well as myself enjoyed every moment, singing all of the words and dancing to our hearts content. They called me didi (sister) and asked me to play more songs. Afterward we went to another area where there was more music, colors, dancing surrounded by more people of my community. It was such a great day and probably one of my favorites since being here. It is very few times when I get to have such a moment with hindi tunes playing dancing to my hearts content. It was even more exciting to have the children enjoying the music with me. Holi has always been a way for me to feel connected to India and my culture. During Holi, I had never felt more connected to my culture. This is part of the reason that I wanted to come to India for a full year so that I would be able to celebrate all of holidays in India. I don't get to have that at all when I am in the U.S. My family doesn't really celebrate these holidays and at school I never get to celebrate these holidays. It was very important to me to be in India to celebrate all of the hoidays. It has been so amazing to be able to be within India seeing how these holidays are celebrated. To celebrate with my community has made me feel more connected than I ever have. Having that feeling made me realize how much of a diaspora I was living in before. It was even more wonderful to celebrate with my friends. I wish that it only lasted for as long as it could.