Monday, 31 March 2014

April, Assam And Bihu

                  I begin my April Challenge with my home state Assam. I greet you all with a 'nomoskar' and welcome you as 'alohi' to this land of green valley, blue hills and the red river.


                April is the time to be in Assam what with the entire state caught in the frenzied preparations to usher in the New Year with Bohag Bihu. It's that time of the year when the cuckoo's sweet voice tugs at your heart, tender leaves sprout on the branches, the orchids tied around trunks of areca nut tree burst forth with mauve and lilac blossoms.

                                           You can hear the bihu songs in the air wherever you maybe. It could be from the radio, televisions, the shops or the rehearsals on in full swing for the various bihu functions to be held throughout the state. You will hardly find an Assamese who has been able to resist the rhythm of the dhol or the sway of the pepa at this time of the year. The bihu dancers attired in the muga mekhela sador smile radiantly flushed with with all the twirling and spinning in the bihu dance. 

                                                  courtesy wallsave

               Let me take you to a village where you can hear the click clacking of the looms,women  weaving feverishly to finish the gamusas that will be presented to relatives and friends. And if you go to the fields you may spot some village belles engage in jeng bihu around a tree. A word of caution though, this is strictly not meant for the male eyes. 

                You are in time for Bihu so you will be treated to a variety of pitha ( rice cakes), sira doi gur (pounded rice with curd) and jaggery, sticky rice, wood fire roasted in bamboo hollows, a variety of fish dishes, duck meat with cumin and black pepper paste and a host of other accompaniments and dishes. You could wash this down with the most amazing pink hued rice beer, ruhi,  served in bell metal bowl. And what do you do after this? Feel happy. You might come across some who are too 'happy' for their own good but generally they are  benign.
              Having kick started your visit with a feast you could take the elephant safari in the Kaziranga National Park and sight a couple of one horned rhinos if you are lucky. Or you could combine a river cruise on the Brahmaputra from Guwahati to Kaziranga with a trip to an ethnic village thrown in. That amounts to shelling out quite a bit though. There are host of other places to visit like Orang, Pobitora, Majuli, Nameri Reserve Forest etc. Then there are the tea gardens of Upper Assam some of which offer the garden experience with a tour of the estate and stay in the spacious bunglows.

                    This was just a cursory glance at the state that is home to numerous ethnic groups of people.  I hope to take you through few of these places in my later posts.  For now, thank you for honouring my invitation and visiting my state. Would love to hear about your home town!

Other images were taken from Wikipedia

This post was written for the A To Z Challenge 2014    


  1. I can the taste the cumin, and feel the essence of women dancing, I dream of visiting India one day, you make me want to put Assam in April on the top of my list - I'm part of co host Pam's Unconventional Alliance. Dropping in from the #atozchallenge. Good luck! Reflex Reactions

  2. Oh! I am glad I could make you feel that. Thanks for stopping by Ida :)

  3. What beautiful writing ilakshee. I shall pop in to have a read of the rest of your April posts as I enjoy travelling, even vicariously.
    Jude xx (A fellow A-Zer)

  4. Thank you for stopping by, Jude! And you are welcome to my blog anytime.

  5. What an amazing time of year. Love your descriptions!

  6. This was beautiful. Several of my co-workers, men and women, are from India, and many of them observe the holidays. I do enjoy hearing about how people celebrate life in other lands, so this is a great start to the AtoZ!

  7. It is truly beautiful then, Kate!

  8. Thanks Larry! Knowing about life in different lands interests me. Thanks for stopping by.


Your words keep me going :)