by a Thinker, Sailor, Blogger, Irreverent Guy from Madras

Happy Pongal 2017 with a Kremlin themed Kolam

Wish everyone a very, very, Happy Pongal on this day 14 January 2017.  Pongal is the Harvest Festival of Tamil Nadu, though for various reasons – primarily the failure of both South West and North East Monsoon – has devastated the agriculture of my home state.  To add cruelty to misery, the demonetisation attempted without much thought, has eviscerated the farmers.

But a festival is a festival, for it means not only thanksgiving for the past – very few for the past year – but also a new hope for the upcoming year – may it be plentiful.

Speaking of festivals, it is tradition in my home state to draw kolam – geometric patterns with rice floor – at the entrance of every Hindu home, and also at the puja altar of every Hindu home.

Actually, it is a daily tradition, but the daily kolams are not that elaborate.  Usually they resemble a small square, star of David, 8 sided stars, stacked triangles, or wriggles around 3x3 dots.  But festivals are different, and require an elaborate kolam.

Kolams, for the uninitiated, are chiefly of 3 types:
  • wriggly lines around dots
  • straight lines, including squares, triangles, rectangles, cross, flying cross, diamonds, etc.
  • combo or curves and arcs with straight lines
    • there are also very, very, few kolams with pure arcs and curves
There is one kolam of the last variety – one with a combo of straight lines and curves, which to my eye has always looked brilliant.  I do not know what the ‘official’ name is, but I think-refer to it as the Kremlin kolam.  I call it Kremlin kolam because it reminds me of the Onion domes and spires of the Kremlin.

I never dared to try it out till today, but with that Russian puppet about to be installed as the American President, it would be better to cosy up to Russia.  So spent half an hour today morning to put up this Happy Pongal kolam.  Not that it is perfect, but this is one of the few designs which distract you enough to see the whole picture instead of the errors.

Enjoy it, and have a Happy Pongal.



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