Happy Holi!

It’s a fun and mischievous time here in Nepal these days …. today is Holi and all hell breaks loose.  I went to yoga this morning and you would think I would be safe but I guess not ….

Even at 6am in the morning, the fun begins!  This was taken afterwards.

Even at 6am in the morning, the fun begins! This was taken just before breakfast

Holi is a Hindu festival but celebrated by all in Nepal, it’s a national holiday here. The festival signifies the victory of good over evil, the arrival of spring, end of winter, and a festive day to meet others, play and laugh, forget and forgive, and generally laugh and have a ton of fun.  Also known as the festival of colours,  it is a free for all where you are a sure target on the streets where young and old carry bags of coloured powders as well as water guns and coloured water-filled balloons for water fights.  You get bombarded from the rooftops, no one or no place is sacred!

At yoga this morning, about 40+ people showed up (there is usually only about 15-20 max).  We only did about half an hour of yoga after which it was mayhem, literally everyone grabbing plates of the coloured powders and smearing the colours on everyone’s face.  They held back initially just putting a tika on my forehead, me being the only westerner and all.  But then one guy who is at yoga every morning, had a bit of a glint in his eye and smeared my cheek with green and there were some howls of laughter (including me) so that opened the door for everyone else to smear my face too.   All good fun.

For the past few days, the kids have been gearing up for Holi, so it was not unusual to have plastic bags of water being lobbed off rooftops onto passersby on the street below.  Fortunately their aim was not that good and most times I managed to dodge the water bags.  And one point on Friday a mother intervened when about 8 kids all lined up to throw water at me, while I was on my way to catch a bus to KTM for a meeting, so I was grateful for that.

As I write this, the bands have already started up and the kids are having a field day, and it’s only 9am.  It’s gonna be a blast of a day.

Happy Holi

About Kate Coffey

After 25+ years in the investment management industry, I packed in my job and spent 2014 living and working in Nepal and Bangladesh, and visited some other places in between. It took me on a journey I did not expect, had me fall in love with Nepal and it's people, and become inspired at the work of Spinal Injury Rehabilitation Centre (SIRC) located 2 hours east of Kathmandu in the Sanga foothills. Since 2014, I have continued my warm relationship with SIRC and worked closely with my friends there in the aftermath of the 2015 earthquakes to date. This blog initially started out as a travelogue of sorts to keep friends and family worldwide updated while I was off on my travels in 2014. Since then it has morphed into a life story of the many places I have lived and worked and of the wonderful people I have met along the way. I hope you enjoy.
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7 Responses to Happy Holi!

  1. Tim says:

    Will you still be there when I get there?

  2. Renu says:

    Happy Holi Kates! You are part indian now… Hehe!

  3. Pingback: Prince Harry visits Nepal | Bowen to Bangladesh

  4. Pingback: Happy Holi! | Bowen to Bangladesh

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  6. Pingback: Happy Holi! | Bowen to Bangladesh

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