Wow! Those moments were surreal. I pinched myself to check if it was a dream. No. It wasn’t. I was physically seated in a High School auditorium in Maryland, United States of America, whereas my soul was in my homeland in India.
I had taken the above picture at a Diwali celebration hosted by the Telugu Association of Maryland(For the benefit of my Non Indian friends: Telugu is spoken in two states in India). One of the programs in that event was a fashion show where some participants were dressed in western wear and some in Indian traditional wear. If you notice the banner behind the participants, you can see ‘Statue of Liberty’ on the left side (Behind the participant with navy blue dress), and ‘Telugu talli’ (‘Telugu Talli’ literally means ‘Telugu Mother’ ,an icon of the Telugu people)on the right side. It shows the extent to which the western culture and Indian culture have blended over the years.
The event itself replicated the celebrations in my homeland. One of the popular Telugu Television anchors(Pradeep), who was the Emcee of the event, captivated the audience with his hilarious commentary. Famous singers, Kalpana and Karunya graced the occasion and sang popular Tollywood songs. Tasty authentic Telugu food was served for dinner. Outside the auditorium there were several stalls selling Indian jewelery, Indian dresses and Indian delicacies. The event which started at noon ended late at night. During those blissful hours, I forgot that I was in a foreign land. However,the moment I stepped outside the building, I was pulled back into reality by harsh cold winter wind. I am thankful for being in a home away from home.
P.S: For Weekly photo challenge