This weekend I had lots and lots of fun celebrating Lord Ganesha’s birthday. I joined in the festivities at Sri Venkateswara Temple for the Hindu festival, Ganesh Chaturthi.
The first pit stop was the temple canteen to stuff myself silly with yummy South Indian food. Masala dosa (mahoosive pancakes stuffed with spicy potatoes), idly (rice cakes with very tasty sauces), vada (deep fried rice cakes; very naughty, but nice) and some scrumptious veggie curry. The only problem…
my eyes were way too big for my belly!!!
Now with a happy belly I was ready to party and join in the birthday celebrations. A clay ganesha was paraded around the temple with drumming and dancing. Being me, I decided to get as close to the action as possible.
Big mistake!!!! I soon discovered why everyone else was standing a few metres back. Red powder showered down on me and before I knew it I was in a middle of a colour fight, leaving me covered head to foot and with a very fetching pink hairdo.
The procession headed toward the beach for the Ganesha Visarjan were the clay Ganesha is plunged into the sea. From my googling efforts I think the ceremony represents the cycle of creation and dissolution, but don’t quote me :o)
It was pretty fun as we all head towards the water edge, to then quickly scramble back up the beach to avoid a huge wave. A few fellow worshippers got wiped out before the Ganeshas were finally washed away.
Where was I? Believe it or not Sri Venkateswara Temple is just South of Sydney, however I did feel like I had been teleported to chaotic and colourful India for an afternoon. Next month I will be writing from India for real :o)
Sri Venkateswara Temple is at Temple Road, Helensburg. If you are heading South of Sydney and happen to be driving past, I’d recommend to drop in, wander around the temple and enjoy some authentic South Indian cusine. The canteen is open weekends, 10am-4pm.