Monday, 30 August 2010

A little bit of India in Japan

Tying on the rakhi
Last Tuesday was the Indian festival of Raksha Bandhan, and since Lily,  her boys, and her nephew visiting from Canada, were in town, Tokyo was the place  to celebrate.   Raksha is a mostly northern Indian, mostly Sikh and Hindu celebration that celebrates the bond between brothers and sisters.  Brothers pledge to protect and care for their sisters and give and give them a gift.  Sisters tie a rahki  (thread) around their brother's wrist and feed them sweets.  If there is no sibling or relative  of the opposite sex,  it is quite legitimate for someone else to take the role, or take the role on behalf of someone absent.    Since Lily's family, including the boys' female cousin is in Canada, Lily asked me to be her proxy and tie the bands arond the boys' wrists. What an honour!

Even though the custom probably has its origins in deeply entrenched patriarchy it has evolved into joyous festival that celebrates family bonds. The boys were beaming and  looked so handsome in their Indian finery;  it's a really warm occasion that  imparts knowledge and pride in their Indian heritage.

As befitting the occasion, we lunched at a nearby Indian- Nepalese restaurant.   While not the swankiest Indian in Tokyo with its new  white and blue hibiscus tablecloths,  it suited well - cozy, friendly, convenient, with better than acceptable food.

Happy Raksha !

The pictures here are ones that Lily took.

Celebrating Raksha - entrees - the salad here is pure Japanese


Lily said...

It was extra special celebating it with you and Hiro too :)
Thank-you for the wonderful lunch and you looked beautiful- I think your next destination is India, and it seems like Hiro would like it too as he already likes the sweets.

Cecilia said...

I meant to send the sweets back for Masa... though I am sure Hiro was secretly glad I forgot... he ate the remainder in one sitting! India here we come :)

Nakamuras on Saipan said...

Your blog is very interesting!