LIFE

A celebration to cherish forever

Having a gala time

Having a gala time  

BIRTHDAYS ARE big milestones for children. It is one of the primal joys that they start to share in their lives. Celebrating a birthday in a meaningful way makes each child feel special and unique. Birthdays are usually memorable and a happy event for everyone involved.

It is an occasion where experiences are recalled with childish aplomb. This applies to adults also who go on the nostalgic lane.

There are several ways to celebrate one's birthday. Some enjoy the occasion by having a big bash, while others just spend the day quietly.

There is no better way to celebrate one's birthday with friends and family.

With the younger generation more and more getting influenced by the Western culture, such birthday celebrations in our country have also grown in stature.

They have become a gala event and made enjoyable by everyone. Events such as these bring in the much-needed relief for adults, as they are a good way of relaxing from the daily drudge.

Especially, for people on move it is an excellent opportunity to take time off and spend time with friends and family.

For P.K. Sridhar, a tenth standard student, b'day celebration has always been a day of merry making. "Initially it was drab, for birthdays were all about wearing new clothes to the school and distributing sweets to fellow students. But now it has changed. In metros such as Chennai and Bangalore, birthdays are organised in fast food joints. The party caterers have special menus and treat the taste buds with mouth-watering delicacies".

An employee in a private firm, S. Kumar, has a different idea altogether. "Birthdays invariably serve as a get-together for old pals. After a sumptuous dinner with our favourite tandoori kababs and chicken, we are then off to a cinema. Of course, we also do have the traditional cake cutting session late in the night. The balloons stuffed with colour papers are usually stuck on to ceiling fans. Snow sprays also add on to the fun as they are sprayed when the candles are blown off."

Recalling such celebrations during her times, the septuagenarian, Rajamma, says "we had no cake-cutting concepts then. Birthdays meant early rising and having an oil bath. After wearing new clothes, the entire family used to visit the temple. "Ayush homam" is usually performed followed by a feast with special items topping the menu list. The "payasams" or "kheer" would be the highlight of the day."

Delicious pastries

Delicious pastries  

According to Sheetal, her daughter, Keerthi's birthday was a pleasant experience. "Residing in an apartment, our house was flooded with kids dressed in dainty clothes for the celebration. And each one of them had a gift too. The birthday cake was made like a Mickey Mouse, much to the delight of the kids.

The party started in right earnest with Keerthi cutting the cake with mellifluous music in the backdrop. There were enough party games to amuse the kids that had assembled for the party.

Games such as "breaking the pinyada", musical chairs and "pin a tail on the donkey" were held, enthralling one and all.

Stacked around the corner were the return gifts, which included stuffed and plastic dolls, games, bowls and other items. At the end of it all, Keerthi was very eager to unwrap the gifts to check out for her new doll collections this year," says Sheetal.

By Vidyashree Amaresh

Photos: K. Ananthan & S. Siva Saravanan

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