Dasain 7: Home for the Holidays

October 19, 2011

in Nepal


Neel with his mother, wife, and sons after the Dasain blessing.


On the 10th day of Dasain, the bloodshed has ended. The eldest member of a family blesses everyone younger, placing a mass of red powder-uncooked rice-yoghurt-mashed banana on each forehead and invoking wishes for success and well-being in the coming year. Over the next two or three days, people will travel all around visiting extended family and receiving blessings from the eldest in each household.

I happily received a blessing from my friend Neel’s 80+ year old mother until she blessed me with a child in the coming year! Not uncommon, she’s concerned that I’m past my prime at 40 and will have no children to take care of me when I grow old. (My tour operator was also asking this week if I’m ever getting married, and he was only half joking.) Neel and his wife and I laugh easily, and I accept the concern along with a red tika on the forehead, barley flowers for my hair, and a few crisp rupee notes. Nonetheless, I rid myself of those blessed rupees the first chance I get, paying the taxi driver on the way home.


{ 1 comment }

Bettina October 24, 2011 at 6:32 pm

Happy Dasain, my friend. And safe trekking. I’m following your stories as always and sending my heart where my memories dwell……


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