One of the pleasures of living near an ethnically diverse urban area is the occasional festival extolling and celebrating the “best of…” the celebrant’s ethnic or religious origins.
On Saturday a friend and I attended the Hindu Festival in Toledo. As a fan of Indian food, there wasn’t much arm-twisting involved to get me to go, even though the thought of being outside for another hot day wasn’t appealing. Although the festival wasn’t a large event, there was plenty to sample in food, and the usual tables laden with Indian jewelry, clothing, and fabrics.
Although the above bounty looked scrumptuous, I opted for a masala dosa (below), a crepe/burrito thingie with potato-veggie filling. Add a bowl of lemon rice, and I was in Indian food heaven…all washed down with a mango lassi, of course.
The Hindu Temple of Toledo hosts this annual Festival of India during August. Last year 2500 people attended, and Saturday it looked as though they were on track to meet or exceed that number. And although I passed on the offer, there were plenty of takers for the henna body painting. Although there wasn’t an elaborate sand painting display, a few areas near the temple had some quick-n-dirty attempts at adding a bit of color and splash.
One visitor made little sense in these surroundings: Muddy, the mascot of the beloved Toledo Mud Hens. I suppose it was a Toledo thing, but somehow he seemed quite out of place among the saris, gold bangles, and multi-armed deities. Still, the kids seemed to enjoy him and I got a thumbs-up as he saw my camera pointed his way.
With a culture whose people enjoy wearing brilliantly colored clothing and dazzling jewels, people watching is an interesting way to pass time. There were plenty of attractive females who eluded my camera’s lens, not so much because I was shy in trying to take their picture or shy in asking them to pose, but when they’re 10 years old they tend not to stand still long enough to bless the camera’s lens! All the shots I got of these precocious kids in their brilliant blues, yellows, reds, oranges, greens, and purples were out of focus, unfortunately. I did, however, manage at least one in-focus shot of the dancers on stage during the show.