Wednesday, October 3, 2007


We had a 'Pookalam' competition at office today.. For those who dont know what a 'Pookalam' is, It is an arrangement of flowers and leaves. Poo - means flower. Kalam means 'special shape'.. Generally during onam, people prepare intricate designs with flowers and decorate their homes with it..

I wanted to break out of the monotony of work and decided to just participate in the competition. This is the first time that i had done something like this.. Though i'm good at drawing, i have never tried out flower arrangement.. What better opportunity, so i decided to go for it..

Then came the BIG question of what would the design be.. and one of my friends came up with an idea of depicting the face of a 'kathakali' dancer. (Kathakali is the most famous dance form that originated in Kerala).. All of us were thrilled with the idea.. Just pulled up a bunch of friends and off we went to the market to buy flowers..
We went to the Tippasandra market, which was filled with flowers of different colours.. bought a lot of them.. roses, jasmines, lillies, marigold...... We were suddenly stuck.. we didnt know what to do for the black colour which would be needed for the eyes...There is no flower which is black in colour..

My criminal brain came up with an idea.. I said, "lets buy a brinjal and peel the skin, carve it out for the eyes of the dancer.." ;-) All of us burst out laughing.. but we had no other choice because the competition would end in an hour and we had no time to argue..Just went ahead with the plan of buying the brinjal..

Reached office in 10 mins and started off.. I was the bakra who had to do the drawing.. :-) Did a free hand drawing of a kathakali dancer's face and must tell, it came out quite well.. much better than i had expected.. Then all of us started arranging the flowers and leaves that we had got.. I peeled out the brinjal and carved the eyes.. silently put the remains of the brinjal back into the bag so that we dont get caught.. ;-) Finally we were done.. We were all more than happy at the way it turned out..

Then came the judge.. I explained to him what a pookalam meant and why we chose the face of the kathakali dancer.. How it takes around 6-8 hours to paint a kathakali dancers face.. how much dedication and effort is needed to do it.. in the same way, we have put in a lot of hardwork and sincerity to this..
He said "you definitely deserve an award for your dedication and hardwork.." I just said, "True. But more than the award and the applause, it was the satisfaction and the thrill of participation in the competition that gave us more happiness.."
Now, that was some modesty isnt it? ;-)

1 comment:

Kamini said...

You have some real talent here!