Sunday, May 19, 2013

Durga Puja

Durga Puja is an annual fall six day festival by Hindus, particularly in eastern India and Bangladesh, celebrating the visit of the goddess Durga and her children, before returning again to the Himalayas to be with her husband Shiva. One of the traditions is the building of Pandals, temporary structures housing an idol of the goddess, essentially temporary temples. People visit these in a very festive atmosphere, also a time for food, music and dancing. The Pandals are often fancifully decorated, and sometimes are based around themes, and can be a year in the planning, only to be torn down after the festival is over. It sort of reminds me of some of the elaborate floats in the Rose Parade in the US. A couple of years ago, West Bengal was home to a LEGO themed Pandal. Sadly, it's actually built of wood, not LEGO.

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