Mahalaya morning holds a special place in our hearts. Is it the waking up before the crack of dawn to bring in the festival of the year? Is it the specific sound of the radio that fills the lanes and crooks of Bengal, before dawn, this day of the year? Or is it the smoky cup of tea that goes along with the experience?

 

Maybe it’s the combination of all three, that makes it an experience, difficult to describe.

 

 

 

This day, as if, marks the beginning of the next ten days of magic in the air, festivities that fill not only your stomach but also your heart, and tea that is more often than not, shared with friends and family.

 

Wherever you are in the country, if you’ve spent any Mahalaya in Kolkata- you will know how dearly loved and nostalgic this day can be.

Memories of the years gone by, come flooding back as the hot cup of tea reminds us of the cold, almost wintry air that October used to bring. Being forced awake to gather around the radio, to listen to the booming voice of Birendra Kishore Bhadra- throwing open all doors, to welcome Durga into our homes and hearts. Too sleepy to get up, to excited to miss Day 1 of the Pujo- that strong cup of liquor tea- marks an awakening and a consciousness that this festival that is about to unfold, cannot not be missed.

 

If you are miles away and reminiscing of that Pujo you spent in Kolkata, brew yourself a strong cup of tea, go online, find those sounds of your childhood. The combination of these mundane things, will quickly bring alive, the Mahalaya you had once spent, in your own City of Joy.

 

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