Friday, 26 August 2011

Haritalika Teej: Religious way to show love for your husband

Haritalika Teej occurs amorphously in my memory as a festival observed by my mom and my grand mom from my early childhood days. In childhood it was quite fun seeing mom getting ready for pooja and preparing delightful goodies cooked for the occasion, long evening prayers and loads of prasad sent by friends and relatives the next morning.

When I got married, I decided to continue this tradition. The festival of Hartalika Teej is observed in the month of Bhadrapada or Bhaadra month. This fast is observed for the longevity of the married life. It is chiefly observed by married ladies.
Ladies observing Haritalika Teej should wake up early in the morning. Tamsik food should not be eaten, in the evening, just before the day of fast. After completing routine work like bathing, the resolution of fast is taken. And, lord Shankar and Mata Parvati are worshiped. no water is drunk, on the day of fast. Goddess is worshipped with incense sticks, lamps and flowers. At the end, story of the fast is heard. And, blessings are taken from the elders of the house.

Legends behind Teej
Teej is a major festival of women celebrated every year in the month of July-August. Women show their devotion towards their husband or to-be-husbands. They adorn themselves with clothes and jewelry and pray for long life of their husband. Though Teej celebrates the advent of monsoon but one of the popular legend of Goddess Parvati led to the celebration of Teej.

In our fast paced, busy lives Teej may not hold much significance, but when looked at from the perspective of women living in villages and those in ancient times who had no means of recreation, no respite from mundane household chores, Teej indeed came as a whiff of fresh breeze. Who would mind getting gifts of clothes and jewellery, opportunity of visiting friends and family and observing a fast that brought them closer to their spouse? After all they performed such a severe penance for the long lives of their husbands!

In our times women visit beauty clinics and rejuvenating spas whenever they wish to, but in those days getting decked up for no reason raised the eyebrows of the entire household. Teej gave them an opportunity to don their best attires and feel good about themselves.

Chandipur Beach: Where Sea Water Disappears

Our diverse country has so many undiscovered gems in its lap that sometime its difficult to believe that such places exist in world. Among them, there is a beach called Chandipur Beach. Few years ago I visited this place by chance and must admit it was an unbelievable experience for me.  Chandipur beach has its unique behavior while comparing to other beaches in the world. This is one of the few places in this world where the differences in low and high tides are the largestThe beach is unique in that the water recedes anywhere from 1 kilometer to 4 kilometers during the ebb and returns at the time of high-tide.

Chandipur Beach

Watching the sea vanish right in front of my eyes and then observing its return is a very rare site. I walked arond 2km inside the beach in its shallow depths when water receded and it was a unique experience. And to add more to this hide and seek of water, the musical sway of the casuarinas trees and creepered white sand dunes add to its seductive beauty.  

Walk on sea bed after water receded for 5 Km

Chasing the waves in a jeep, when the sea retreats is unforgettable experience.

Sea water Retreats

Chandipur is an ideal beach resort of Orissa it is situated at a distance of 200 km from Cuttack and 230 km from Bhubaneswar.  It is a must see destinations for all beach lovers.
How to go there
Air :- Nearest Airport is Bhubaneshwar, 214 km.
Rail :- Neelanchal Express, Puri-Howrah trains stop at Balasore, from where Chandipur is 16 kms. and is approachable by road.
Road :- Balasore (16 kms). NH5 links the town with Bhubaneswar in the south and Calcutta in the north.

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