Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Throwback Thursday: "Viswakarma Puja" - Now and Then!!

How time changes everything, well “almost” everything!! I am always amazed by this very true fact of life. Being an Engineer in India, September 17th was always different than other days! Because, it is when “Vishwakarma Puja is celebrated. Viswakarma is the Architect God in Hindu mythology, and this particular Puja is celebrated mainly in the industrial sector across many different states in more about "Viswakarma Puja" here :-)

I remember washing and cleaning all the machines in our home with my sister; when we were younger we handled small apparatus like refrigerator, mom's sewing machine, TV, VCR etc. :-) and as we grew older, we got promoted to washing the car! :-) Whether each of us personally believes in God or in the power of prayer, as Indians, Pujas are such an integral part of our culture. For this particular Puja, we pray and thank the almighty for blessing us with so much technology; that’s the essence. I also remember going to my uncle's office who worked in the Public Works Department where this Puja was a huge thing and being so overwhelmed by the amazing community consisting of technical personnel from all level. After that, I joined Engineering, and because my home was in the same city as my college, I was able to help mom with the household duties and still catch AEC (Assam Engineering CollegePuja in action :-) I especially enjoyed the enthusiasm and vigor of the lab technicians while planning and organizing the Puja! After that I missed it for a bit as I was out-of-state for a few years. Then I joined ASEB (Assam State Electricity Board) and it was a whole different story! I worked at a divisional head-office and we supervised three sub-divisions. Each unit will organize their own Puja and after attending the Puja at our office, we will visit each subdivision. I do miss the joyous feeling of an otherwise extremely busy and comparatively tensed revenue office; it was really a refreshing change for me! Each subdivision would also organize a gourmet feast after the Puja; it was almost competitive among the subdivisions! As they would try to book the best available date for organizing the feast and not to mention, to plan the best menu J. Working in an electric utility where “limited resources” is a constant problem, can be really stressful for employees at every level; hence I really appreciated this kind of festivity once in a while!

Me with my wonderful ex-collegues; yes, we all dolled up and I can't believe how much
 I have changed in these years :-)
But now September 17th is just another day - I wake up, get ready and go to office, come home, surf a bit, have dinner and get ready for the next day! And thanks to my nomadic work life, I don't even get to pray and do the Puja on my own, even on a minuscule level! But change is inevitable and I am hoping, someday again, I will be able to observe and enjoy these festivities again :-)
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