Nostalgia and Longing: Missing Durga Puja Celebrations in Silchar
As the plane descended, my heart pounded with anticipation. The familiar sight of the Barak River winding through the town would soon come into view. This was the moment I had been waiting for, the annual homecoming, the cherished reunion with the sights, sounds, and scents of my beloved hometown, Silchar, during Durga Puja.
This year, however, the airport terminal at Silchar remained a distant memory. Circumstances beyond my control had forced me to miss the festivities, leaving a void in my heart that no distance or distraction could fill.
The thought of not being with my friends, laughing and sharing stories under the flickering lights of the pandals, was a pang of longing that cut deep. Those shared moments, the inside jokes, the exuberance of youth – they all seemed impossibly distant.
The warmth of my family’s embrace, their smiles of unbridled joy at my return, were conspicuously absent this year. It was an ache that went beyond homesickness; it was a heartache for the togetherness that was slipping through my fingers.
The plane’s window, which usually framed the first sight of the Barak River, remained a cold pane of glass. The winding river that held a piece of my soul was now an image trapped in my memory, a wistful ghost that haunted my thoughts.
The sight of the grand Durga Puja pandals, each a testament to the creativity and devotion of the organizers, was sorely missed. Their vibrant colors, intricate decorations, and the palpable sense of reverence were an integral part of the celebration. Their absence this year left a void in the landscape of my heart.
And oh, the puchkas! The burst of flavor, the spicy tang, and the cool relief that followed – a sensory journey that I yearned for from afar. The taste of home, of tradition, of a culture that defined me, seemed ephemeral and distant.
But the most poignant absence was that of my family, my parents, and my daughter’s grandparents. My daughter was not just missing Durga Puja; she was separated by over 2000 kilometers from her roots, her traditions, and the warmth of her grandparents’ love. My heart ached for her, knowing that she was deprived of this vital connection to her cultural heritage.
As I sat in my far-off location, my heart ached for Silchar, for its people, for its traditions. The distance felt insurmountable, and the longing was like an ache in my bones.
The heartache of missing Durga Puja in Silchar this year is more than the absence of traditions; it’s the longing for a connection to our roots, our culture, and our loved ones. As I sit far away, my thoughts are with my daughter, who deserves to grow up surrounded by the love and traditions that have defined our family for generations.
The separation this year is a stark reminder that no matter where life takes us, our hometown and its traditions will always hold a special place in our hearts. But amidst the melancholy, there was a glimmer of hope. The missed celebrations only served to strengthen my resolve to make the next one unforgettable. The Barak River, the pandals, the puchkas – they would all be waiting for me, as would my friends and family, with open arms and hearts full of love. I can only hope that in the years to come, my daughter will experience the magic of Silchar’s Durga Puja, and together, we will make up for the celebrations missed, cherishing every moment with family and friends.
And so, as the plane took off from its distant runway, I made a silent promise to myself and to Silchar. I would return, and when I do, the celebrations would be more cherished, the moments more treasured, and the love more profound. Until then, the memories of Durga Puja in Silchar would be my solace, my anchor, and my driving force to come back home.