Happy Holi from the hills

Happy Holi from the hills

The Phalachan Valley in Himachal, where we are staying with our friends Shalini and Dam, is chilly and rainy this Holi day. It rained a lot over night, and quite a bit this morning, but now it has turned into one of those will it/won’t it afternoons, with grey clouds scudding across the sky.

Very un-Holi-bright-jolly-colour-esque, all this grey.

On the stroke of 12 – which is when Holi is meant to be over – I headed down the hill along the bumpy road, to “Signal Point” where mobile connectivity is a little better. Choco, the lovely dog who kinda calls this place home, walked with me. He took his protection duties seriously, barking aggressively at 2 other lovely looking dogs who were walking with 2 villagers, who also stopped to make phone calls.

So there we all were, 2 of ‘em chatting, me checking my email, and 3 dogs all barking like crazy.

Perhaps Holi isn’t that big a deal in Himachal (note to self – check with Shalini & Dam) but I saw no-one with any tell-tale “gulal” (coloured powder) on their faces, and there was no loud music, and no sign of water-guns. Perhaps it’s just Delhi where it all gets a bit too boisterous for my taste.

So, since it’s been a quiet Holi up here, let me share a few photos of this lovely valley to mark the festival of colours – and no, don’t worry, they won’t all be of grey skies!

Holi Mubarak, everyone.

I would be remiss if I didn’t point out that we are still in the throes of a deadly pandemic, and that India’s infections are rising alarmingly. Despite strictures from the government not to go out and celebrate Holi, despite a year of being told to wear masks and to maintain social distancing, just take a look at some images from around the country today (courtesy of ANI)

Makes you want to weep, quite frankly.

And well done to my sensible Himachali neighbours!

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