And as India soon erupts in colour, what a delightful scene it is! Reds and greens, blues and orange, yellows and browns, splashed, sprayed, squeezed, and suddenly joy and laughter erupting from town and village, city and nation, gully, street and highway!
Yes, this year, Holi will certainly be subdued, but we are a colourful people and will welcome spring any which way, even if it is just the thumbing of a vermilion of cadmium red and titanium white on one another’s forehead!
Something that so often differentiates our slums and chawls from those of others around the world, are the strong reds and greens and oranges our people paint the outsides, of their small abodes, suddenly giving joyous life to otherwise dismal surroundings!
We are a people who love colour!
“Yes, we are!” says the tricolor fluttering above me, “It doesn’t require only the festival of Holi to realize we are made up of different colours all weaved into one! I am different shades too!”
I look up at the flag waving proudly in the breeze and see how beautifully the saffron, white and green blend into each other.
“Imagine how I would look if I was just one shade!” roars the tricolor.
I look up startled, “What?”
“You heard what I said,” roars the national flag again, “How beautiful these colours look on me! I have seen men and women tears of pride flowing down their cheeks when I am unfurled or hoisted, sometimes in some Olympic winning or other proud event, where they are proud to be an Indian, proud to be saffron, white and green!”
“Yes!” I say simply.
“But imagine if I was only one colour!”
WHY HAVEN’T YOU ENROLLED AS YET?
I look up at the colourful flag, that represents my country and hear it continue, “There are many people today in our country who would like me to be just one shade!”
“How boring!” I say out aloud.
“Yes indeed!” says the tricolor, “How boring I would look, and how boring we as a nation would be if all we were, were just one single hue!”
And suddenly there are happy screams and shouts, laughter and pretty faces giggling, as men and women, most with masks on, throw colour into the sky, and onto each other.
What a delightful scene it is! Reds and greens, blues and orange, yellows and browns, splashed, sprayed and squeezed, and suddenly joy and laughter erupting from town and village, city and nation, gully, street and highway!
“We are meant to be a nation of different colours!” I whisper.
“Yes!” shouts the tricolor happily, “All blending into one country, one unified land of diverse religions and cultures!”
“Happy Holi!” speak the colours, lettering themselves into the sky..!
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