Monday, April 9, 2012

Abhay goes to a village fair!

Last week was a truncated week at work with one holiday in the middle of the week and another towards the end, making it ideally suited for a quick getaway. Ah!….the pleasure of working in India with its numerous Government holidays! J Since my husband’s native Polali, a small village in South Karana District of Karnataka was holding its annual temple fair the same time, we jumped into the travel bandwagon too and headed out of Bangalore for a couple of days. My husband was excited about going to his native temple fair, an event he had grown up watching, after a gap over four years and Abhay was excited about travelling with his cousins for the first time! So with three little monkeys, their respective moms, the older monkey (with due apologies) and his mom (my mother in law), we travelled to a village fair and were enthralled by the rustic charm of rural India in all its hues and colors!

We left the boys free ……to jump, play and run as much as they wanted across the vast open spaces that typically lie in front of an Indian village home, something they miss in a crowded city like Bangalore. More than the temple pooja, they were interested in the makeshift giant wheel rides and stalls selling ice creams, toys and other knick knacks (understandably so!) while we got to see the splendor of a village fair through the wonderous eyes of a child once again ….thanks to our kids! Remembering the good time we had over the weekend, I read “The Village Fair” a bi-lingual book from Tulika by Radhika Meghanathan and illustrations by Nancy Raj. It is Meenu’s birthday and she is thrilled when Grandpa promises to take her to the village fair. However, when the day arrives Meenu slips from the stairs and breaks her leg. Meenu at first feels dejected at not being able to have fun at the village fair. But thanks to her family and friends, Meenu is able to experience all the fun by staying at home – with grandpa bringing in two men with two huge bundles of new clothes to choose from; Her grandma buying her new toys from the village toymaker who calls on them; A sumptuous birthday feast at home leaves Meenu thirsty when the ice cream man walks in with colouful ice candies; In the evening, a woman comes pushing a ferris when her grandpa lifts her onto a basket and swings the ferris wheel that goes up and comes down sending Meenu into a tizzy! Just then a man with yellow stripes dressed as a tiger performs acrobatics called “Pulivesham” and Meenu cant believe her luck to have the entire village fair at her doorstep! This is a great read for someone completely oblivious to the vibrant life in rural India. Abhay liked the colorful illustrations that made him remember all what we did last couple of days in our village fair, particularly the tiny ferris wheel being swung by a couple of men. So if your child has never been to a village fair, read The Village fair and don’t forget to visit one too!


  1. Good one!I can totally relate to this.Last week,we had a similar fair except that it was right here in Shivajinagar,Bangalore.Every year,we have Godess Mutthyalamma's annual car/chariot festival.Thousands of people gather for this event.All my cousins and us meet at our grandpa's place and it is truly nostalgic.Brings back so many memories.

  2. I know....a traditional fair has a charm of its own! Glad you had the same experience!:-)