Sara Khan – While we don’t celebrate Makar Sankrant or Lohri at home, I am a major kite-flying enthusiast. Unlike most girls my age, I was always really good at it and I took part in a lot of kite-flying competitions. It was always so much fun to bring down your competitor’s kite. It calls for a lot of studied dexterity and I somehow had the knack for it! I’d love to do some kite flying this Sankrant!
Every Gujarati worth his dhokla will tell you that Makar Sankranti is one of the most auspicious occasions for the Hindus, and is celebrated in almost all parts of the country in myriad cultural forms, with great devotion, fervor & gaiety. It is a harvest festival. Makar Sankranti is perhaps the only Indian festival whose date always falls on the same day every year i.e. the 14th of January. I was not very good at it but absolutely loved flying kites.
Every kid in my hometown, Baroda, knows how to fly kites but I feel very embarrassed of the fact that I cannot! My entire family are brilliant at the activity. As a child, I used to sit downstairs when my father, uncles and cousins would be on the terrace flying kites passionately. It’s not that I did not try but after many failed attempts I realized that I am only good at holding the Phirki while someone else calls the shots. I loved the sesame sweets (til) prepared during Makar Sankranti and the most exciting part was digging out the 25 paise coins hidden inside those delicious til gud mithais.
For us Gujaratis, Makar Sankranti holds much significance as it is a festival that celebrates the abundant harvest. The elders in the family would always make it a point to give gifts to the younger members. Of course, the day wasn’t complete without the yummy delicacies prepared for us. I would feel bad for that my mother and aunts would spend hours preparing these mithais that we would finish within a few minutes!