Holi – the festival of colors – is a religious holiday that marks the beginning of spring. It is celebrated on the last full moon day of the lunar month Phalguna (February/March) of the Hindu calendar. During this time, the normally strict social rules are abandoned, and people of all ages, gender, class and casts intermingle to celebrate the end of winter. It is a vibrant celebration where people, sing, dance, and throw powdered dye at each other!
Last weekend, I had the opportunity to attend my very first Holi celebration – in Catalunya of all places! It was a true testament to the diversity of Barcelona and although I have not been to India, I believe it lived up to the spirit of Holi. I witnessed people from different backgrounds – Catalans, Americans, Germans, Italians, Indians, etc and of all different ages come together to welcome the arrival of Spring. It was a gorgeous sunny day – filled with non-stop Bollywood hits, dancing, and of course dye! I think people in India would have been proud of our tribute to this wonderful holiday. Personally, it was one of the most fun filled days of my life and a memory I will always treasure. It was totally worth all the strange looks I got walking back to my apartment covered in dye!
One day I hope to celebrate this holiday in India. Till then, here are a few of the pictures that I think best capture the essence of our celebration in Catalunya. Happy Holi!