The story begins with the completion of a 3 year task. Law School. This week I completed the final assignment of my law school career. Corporate Tax research paper. So 'tax-law'. ('tax-law' in code means lame, boring, or not-interesting - I enjoy tax, but for most it's lame, boring, or not-interesting)
I completed my paper on Friday morning, and by noon I was getting ready for an interesting day. I had been cooped up in my little room since the past Saturday, researching, reading and writing this paper on the general anti-avoidance rule (GAAR) in Canadian income tax law. So, I was in need of an escape.
I joined a friend and went to Good Friday service at a mega church in Singapore. There were literally thousands of people attending this service - and it was a huge production. WOW! is all I can say. The Easter 'play' was similar/comparable to a tv-series drama.
Then we headed back to campus for a series of dance performances. A friend from law school was performing in one of the shows. The performance was 2 hours of short dance ensembles. Some were good, some were not. The residence halls each had a dance group that performed 1-3 ensembles and the audience was all 17-20 year olds. a cultural experience to say the least.
Then, we hurried around to meet up with another group of people to head down to the red light district. We were going down there for some 'sociological research'. One of the girls is studying sociology, and she needed a paper topic. Wow, was that ever a bad idea. The girls just walked around and then sat down to eat. It was a terribly dirty area, that stunk of refuse and garbage. Definitely not what you think of when you imagine Singapore.
There were big plans for 'holi'.
Holi (Hindi: %u0939%u094B%u0932%u0940), or Phagwa (Bhojpuri), also called the Festival of Colours, is a popular Hindu spring festival observed in India and Nepal. In West Bengal, it is known as Dolyatra (Doljatra) or Boshonto Utsav ("spring festival").
On the second day, known as Dhulhendi, people spend the day throwing colored powder and water at each other. The spring season, during which the weather changes, is believed to cause viral fever and cold. Thus, the playful throwing of the colored powders has a medicinal significance: the colors are traditionally made of Neem, Kumkum, Haldi, Bilva, and other medicinal herbs prescribed by %u0100yurvedic doctors. A special drink called thandai is prepared, sometimes containing bhang (Cannabis sativa).
Rangapanchami occurs a few days later on a Panchami (fifth day of the full moon), marking the end of festivities involving colours.
Holi takes place over two days in the later part of February or March. As per the Hindu calendar, it falls on the Phalgun Purnima (or Pooranmashi, Full Moon), which will occur on March 22 in 2008. On the first day (22 March 2008 CE), symbolic burning of evil takes place, while the fun part of playing with colors takes place on the second day. (In 2007, Holi was celebrated on 3 March, the burning of Holika was on 4 March and the Dhuleti on 5 March.)
We headed down to Farrer Park in Little India for the festivities that began at 4:00. Five minutes after arrival the torrential downpour began and continued for an hour or more. Thus, the paint was everywhere, in your eyes, nose and mouth. Pretty disgusting! But, the rain also continuously washed you clean.
Upon entering, you are given a ziplock baggie full of tempura paint. and the games begin. At about 5:30'ish the performances began, and more and more people began to arrive - which meant, people with new baggies of paint that wanted to get you more colored.
The rain started again and I took cover. I was cold and wanted to start to dry out. It was quite interesting though. We ate and gathered our things to head out around 7:30. We wandered into Little India for some hot tea, and caught a taxi home for a hot shower and bed.
Now, Easter morning and time for reflection.
Monday, March 24 I head off to the Philippines for 10 days, then off to Borneo for some scuba diving for a week, then back to Singapore to pick up my momma. So, there will probably not be an update for awhile.