He came, and he is back to his heavenly abode; but ever resides in our hearts; Am late(very late :P) doing the post; but better late than never.

Following the many festivals starting Shravan Maasa, the culmination was found in the grand Ganesha-Swarna Gowri Vratam.

Making karjikai(a.k.a Kargadbu) for the first time was a challenge in itself for me; but I think Ganesha was in a mood to eat some decent stuff; he helped me do them.

Shopping for the maradha bhagna given to married women(sumangali),
flowers and other stuff for the Vratam, Su’s colleagues coming for lunch, inviting people around for the thambulam all accounted to a real festive atmosphere. Remembered the first time we both had celebrated the festival in Hyderabad last year; not knowing the Telugu names for any of the stuff; saving them in the mobile; arati aakalhu (plaintain leaves); thamala paaku (betel leaves); pasupu kamunu (turmeric sticks). And yes, the Punjagutta flyover collapse the day we had gone to Monda market, Secunderabad for shopping.

Maradha bhagna

It wasn’t that tough this time around as we knew where we could find what.

Two things I really found interesting in Hyderabad; one ofcourse the tallest Ganapati of India in Khairatabad ;we did visit the place to invoke his blessings for the first time this year.

Also, it was a great sight to see big and different forms of Ganeshas adorning each and every small street.

And ofcourse,the Nimajjan.The Nimajjan in Hyderabad is just too good to miss; So many tableaus; reminded me of Dussehra procession in Mysore. The arrangements
for the immersion were also great; the lighting, security, traffic control; the cranes all in place. It was a nice experience to be on the Tank Bund to watch the Nimajjan in Hussain Sagar on 14th September. Many different forms of Ganesha; a few shown below, each one looking better than the other, and we did take a few snaps, whatever we could manage with the mobile camera [somehow decided we would not carry the Nikon D-40 😦 owing to rains and stuff]

Just could not decide that it was enough at even one moment of time. After watching the grandeur for almost 4 hrs, we returned back home walking all the way for almost 5 kms with a selfish urge to meet him again and again. All in all, a well spent Sunday evening.

Ganapati Bappa Morya!

Vratam arrangements

Naivedyam

After Gowri Puja

After Ganesha Puja

Another interesting thing is the annual Balapur Ganesh Laddu auction which takes place here.

The ‘laddu’ auction this year is supposed to have fetched Balapur Ganesh Utsav Samithi Rs. 5.07 lakh as against Rs. 4.15 lakh last year.

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