“As a child, I would wait throughout the year for Dussehra, my favourite festival, only because of Golu – the arrangement of dolls. They are usually arranged in an odd number of steps – sometimes I’ve had as many as nine steps! While the first few are reserved for Gods and Goddesses, the rest are regular fun dolls. I also make a small park at the base out of cardboard or thermacol and place animals, a train and sometimes, a waterfall too! Each doll has a story and some history attached to it. The Golus are generally a combination of older dolls, usually those given to a bride by her mother. The tradition demands that we purchase 1-2 new dolls every year and add it to the collection. That way, the number keeps increasing, while we also have dolls as old as 20 years.
Ladies from the neighborhood come home to celebrate with us. A lot of people love seeing these dolls, especially kids. So I also make some delicious Sundal (snacks) and buy return gifts for those who come and visit me.
During my childhood, I would be happy on Saraswati puja because my mom would keep all the books near Goddess, which means I didn’t have to study! When I started following this in my house, my daughters too would do the same. Once we moved out of the joint family, my kids started helping me with arranging Golu. I relive my childhood memories through them and by celebrating such traditions.”
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