An Indian Wedding in Uttarakhand

We continue our journey to the source of the Ganges with our trekking guide. We drive on a mountain road a bit rugged, a little steep, in the foothills of the Himalayas, between Uttarkashi and Gangotri, on the heights where the Ganges has its source. Many times at the side of the road we see parties and buses that carry lots of youth in cheerful mood.

Often, the buses are stuffed and a human cluster is also perched on the roof, clinging to the luggage rack. Our guide says these are for weddings. Why are there so many today? No doubt, he says, astrologers have judged the day to be favorable. Precisely, at the edge of the road, near the Singhani village, the party is in full swing.

We stop and we are invited. The feast began the night before. This marriage takes place in the caste of the warriors which authorizes the consumption of meat but also alcohol. Some participants are a little drunk. The newlyweds, well dressed, sit on chairs. When I arrived the festivities had begun. There were more than hundred people in the course.

People were sitting on the floor sitting on mats. On a platform I saw few men waiting. And on one side, several men were in full discussion, with wads of notes in their hands. At first, I walked from group to group or the guests asked me to take pictures. What is good in India is that I do not have to ask to take pictures of people. It is they who come to me and ask me. Even if I have no desire.

Then after an hour, a man introduced me to his brother. So I found myself on the platform! I am surrounded by people in beautiful dresses, and me in a t-shirt, the same one I had been wearing for a few days already! I wear a jersey like of a football team and pants, backpack and sandals! Most importantly, I find myself talking with one of the newlyweds.

The crazy thing is that he tells me since it is an arranged marriage he does not know his wife at all! He never saw her, or never spoke to her. I am speechless to hear that and ask him a lot of questions. If he is afraid to live all his life with the same person? If he had a girlfriend before the wedding? And he answered quietly. I wondered how it could be possible to be so zen while the rest of his life is played at this moment.

As we waited for his bride, and I was in a state close to syncope, the bridegroom asked me, if I have any adult videos in my phone? What? Have I heard correctly? It is incredible, that the guy asks this to one whom he met the first time! The guy is going to marry a girl he does not know and wonder if I have these videos! Of course, there is a world that separates me from them! The phrase of the century is a moment like this.

Then come the long awaited moment, as the woman go up on the platform with her future husband. I am writing future because the ceremony has not taken place yet. And this moment is still more than surprising. She approach, eyes down, sit next to her future husband without even looking at him. Then she get up and get in front always looking at the ground!

It's crazy that they've been there for 20 minutes! They are getting married, are never seen, and do not look at each other! My emotions are galloping. At this moment, I am no longer a backpacker but a family member, attending the wedding of a loved one. I am the guest of honor!

And the long-awaited moment arrives. The eyes meet for the first time. After half an hour. I'm waiting for a smile! Nothing. The couple take part in the ceremony without any particular emotion. And yet, I must say that I am reassured for my married friend. His wife is beautiful!

The hours pass, and the time of the photos arrive. And guess what? Who is asked to go up on the platform? I find myself in the pictures of the wedding, with the couple and their families! I wonder if there is any hidden camera, and imagine that my parents will come out and go tell me, here is your wife!

Here at the end of the evening while I have been there for several hours, I have eaten countless meals, and drunk many rounds of tea, comes a rather bizarre moment. Finally I say weird because I did not understand. The bride and groom were doing drawings on the floor. It is a moment that I found quite romantic and even sensual, especially since it was not until this moment to see the newlyweds finally smile.

We arrive at a pivotal moment of the day. The bride will soon leave the house of her parents to discover that of the family of her husband where she will live henceforth. The bride also seems a little sad. From time to time, she lets out a small tear. Is it because she will leave the house where she was raised? Or is it because she marries someone she did not choose? How to know? The groom is young and handsome, though.

In Singhani, in the foothills of the Himalayas, we are in the countryside. The most likely is that this marriage has been arranged. This is, according to our guide, an average wedding. The moment we arrive, is a key moment. The bride is soon brought to a palanquin whose curtains are immediately closed.

In the process, her young husband is on another palanquin, open to the eyes. At the entrance of the house, the orchestra redoubles energy to accompany the parade that begins. Soon, the two palanquins move away on the road. Carried on her palanquin with arms of men, the bride will join the house of the parents of her future husband, the one where she will live now!

Upon her arrival, she will meet her mother-in-law as only her father-in-law has come to her parents' home, cousins ​​and other relatives of her husband. Of course, they will make her go around the house, which will be her now. The party will continue. Then there will be, of course, the wedding night.

Meanwhile, in her birth house, a woman collapses in tears. It is the mother of the bride! She loses her daughter. Of course, she will see her again but not right away. In the meantime, the women around her are trying to comfort her. And I hope one day to return to the side and see the bride and groom. And if I find them, I will offer them my photo album of their wedding.

An Indian Wedding in Uttarakhand

A Philosophical Spiritual Travel to Shirdi

We travel to Shirdi, which is about 200 km from Pune. We were in Shirdi on Guru Purnima, an important Indian festival that always takes place on the full moon in July. Unfortunately, the ride was not without obstacles. After 70 km the bus had a breakdown and came to a halt. We had to go outside, where the sun was burning at 41 degrees celsius from the sky. A tree was nearby, where it can hold about 60 people in the shade.

After 4 hours, many telephone calls and repair attempts, we board again but only for a short time. After 100 meters the driver calls another bus, which then arrived after half an hour. The new bus had a very strong AC, adjusted to 16 degrees celsius but was unregulatable. So we travel in the cold for another 3 hours. We borrowed warm jackets and scarves from the neighbors.

The atmosphere in the group was remarkable. No one complained despite all the adversities. Patience and mutual care prevailed. Thanks to the generous supply of homeopathic remedies already on the bus, nobody was ill. The real size of India is only one of the bus trips. On the plane, you fly 4 hours and is still in India, but an 8-hour bus trip is very little. This does not concern the distance. A distance of 120 km can take 3 to 5 hours, although you drive on the highway.

The number of gods in India increases per 1000km road network. This can get understood when the driver tries to undercut the above travel time by a bus without break. And one sits in the rearmost compartment of the same. We had such a driver, such a bus and such roads. To pray to a deity is no longer enough, believe us.

Those who survive this will also survive the emerging X forces of a fighter jet in the air battle. India has exactly the same reason for a big air force. All trucks and bus drivers are potential fighter jet pilots.

Shirdi is now in sight! The bus driver gives a test drive. The Tata bus starts for the landing approach, because of the last ground wave. But first, it has to clean the garage with air-ground missiles of monkeys. The conductor thanks us and later gives us chai.

Before we arrived, we asked our tour guide if we would recognize Shirdi by some suburbs. If one were to travel through the wilderness forever, a larger city would be able to imagine it. He only meant that Shirdi is a small village and so has no suburbs.

Shirdi is a place of pilgrimage. Shirdi Sai Baba has his temple here and that is why we are here. Otherwise, there's nothing to see in Shirdi. At least we would not have noticed. The streets are very very dirty and life generally very easy. The city itself was anything but small.

We reach near the hotel. As we get off the bus, half of the staff are waiting for us. Most striking is the security guard who carries a large headdress like a rooster. Our luggage gets carried to the room and we get a welcome drink. We are standing in the large hall with an aligned dome in the center to get a nice view. For the first day, it was so pretty. We take ample rest after dinner.

Day 2

We went early to the temple which is only a few minutes walk from the hotel. There are crowds of people. We take the VIP entrance to get a little faster. There are so many heads of the old and young. And many stares, laugh and nod at us. We walk, completely dressed in white and barefoot. Finally, the black blends with the whites and we find ourselves in the midst of black eyes and hair.

Step by step, we continue to a white marble statue of the Shirdi Sai Baba. Shirdi Sai Baba lived for many years as a beggar in Shirdi. At first, the village population refused him, which only changed when he began to heal cures. Then more and more people from abroad sought his advice.

Shirdi Sai Baba always left open whether he was Hindu or Muslim. His motto was all men are equal, all religions are equal in the core. The air is humid. Devotees sing, scream, cry and laugh. The highlight of everyone is the bowing and touching of his gold feet with the third eye.

We sat on the ground in one of the courtyards that surround the tomb of Shirdi Sai Baba and sing Bhajans. Immediately crowds gather around us, singing with their full throats. This gave a very nice feeling of unity and understanding. Then we continue to the back exit, where Sai Baba got buried.

There are four flames, underneath the neem tree, which has been burning for hundreds of years. Here we bow before his Lingam and then sit to meditate. People also chant mantras.

The process takes about two hours. We have some coffee nearby and then take the rickshaw to the hotel and rest. Until about mid-afternoon, then we had lunch. Later we decided to travel further into the city. Behold, we find a vegan cafe, few meters away. We are happy now and they actually had coffee beans!

But the surrounding area of the temple was not much beautiful. A round of the temple was there, then it was dark again and we wanted to go back. But there was still time for a glass of sugar beet juice with lime. We buy some souvenirs. We also made it to the temple to go to the Dwarkamai. It is the place where Sai Baba, for a long time, has lived.

We went late evening since over the day the crowds were too big. We could make ourselves comfortable when the sirens were out. We had a lovely evening in a beautiful restaurant garden with a delicious meal under palm trees. We go up and down to the hotel.

Day 3

At 5 o'clock in the morning after a short breakfast, our bus went back to Poona. This time it was without any breakdown and we reached to take the flight to Bangalore on time.

The Train to Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu

Rameswaram is an isthmus located in South India only about thirty kilometers from Sri Lanka. Rameswaran is one of the Char Dham, the four pilgrimage points. It is even called Benares of the South! There are many pilgrims. People come to perform rituals and ablutions in the temple and on the ghats on the beach. It is not in the Ganga this time, but in the sea that the pilgrims bathe.

We get up very early at 4 am because we have to take the 5:30 train from Madurai to Rameswaram. We have tea and take the toasts prepared for us! The kolam was being made in front of the entrance of the house. They are ephemeral drawings that every woman carries out carefully to welcome and bring luck. They are made, freehand, leaving the rice powder, flowing from their fingers. A taxi takes us to the station, located far enough away from the neighborhood. The train arrive 30 minutes late.

It is really worth it to come to Rameswaram by train because the arrival is fantastic. It looks like the train flies over the sea. In addition, the doors of the train are open and the tracks are only a few meters above the water! The island where Rameswaram is located is connected to the mainland by the Panbam bridge, named after the fishing village. There is a superb view of the fishing village below with all the boats lined up and men unloading fish.

After arriving, we leave in search of a hotel. There are very few tourists here. The city lives from and for spiritual tourism. Hotels and restaurants compete with the number of temples, ashrams and supposed gurus. Especially with the heat, the smell of fishing has invaded the city and a scent of fish floats on Rameswaram.

The streets are lined with ice cream vendors, small restaurants, bike rental stalls, religious souvenir displays, shell mirror shops and travel agencies. In the street, tiny horses pull wobbly carriages, while beside them donkeys run smoothly with cows who take advantage of their status to scratch bananas at the entrance of the temple.

The women, as always dressed in bright multicolored saris, chatter in front of an ice cream or a glass of hot milk. As for men, almost all in traditional dhoti doze in the shade. Most of them bear on the forehead the three horizontal gray ash strips of Shiva, the god in the spotlight here.

We finally take a room at the most chic hotel in the city after hard bargaining and getting a substantial discount. At the hotel there are only large rooms but it's clean, very quiet and well located, close to the sea and the ghats. The city center with the temple is 5 minutes walk. The room overlooks a shared balcony and, around the hotel, there is a large space that serves as parking.

After settling down we go to the hotel restaurant. The meals are served on a banana leaf, with rice, spicy vegetable curries, and a pappadam. We leave to visit the Ramanathaswamy Temple. The city is organized in a circular way around the Ramanathaswamy, the main temple. The temple is very special with its long corridors lined with columns with grimacing and colorful faces.

In the temple, there are 22 wells where the pilgrims pour water on the head to each of them. It is prohibited to take pictures inside the temple. We celebrate the baptism of the new elephant of the temple, just five years old, but who already knows very well to bless the faithful at the command of his mahout. But this devotion does not convince everyone, especially the followers of Vishnu. Many at the entrance of the temple sell the Bhagavad Gita.

We leave the temple and take the street just opposite to go Agni Theertham, a piece of sea where people come to immerse themselves to purify themselves. We find a religious fervor less oppressive than temple and despite the sacredness of their actions, the atmosphere is more joyful.

In the afternoon we decided to go in search of the famous Adam's Bridge of floating stones. I rent a motorcycle and go to the tip of the island, Dhanushkodi, the famous end of the world. After crossing a pine forest, the road ends and I have to continue on the bus which passes there. The people who accompany us in the minibus are very friendly, and they even offer ice cream! The road is very sandy and bumpy surrounded on both sides by the Bay of Bengal and the Indian Ocean.

As far as the eye can see, we see only egrets searching the sand and crows perched on shipwrecks half buried. We arrive at the end, in Dhanushkodi, a village that was destroyed by a cyclone, as well as the railway line that arrived there. The vision of the remains of the village (including the train station, the post office, the church with its altar) is quite moving. There are many tourists who do rituals on the beach. It is here that the Indian Ocean joins the Arabian Sea and the Bay of Bengal.

It is forbidden to bathe here as it seems that it is dangerous. We tried to breathe at the rhythm of each of the waves and see which one we felt most comfortable with. Sita was no longer waiting on the other side or Rama. Nor were there traces of kings or gods. There is only me and a blue sea that stretched around.

When we are back in Rameswaram, it is already 5 pm. We leave along the promenade along the sea, to the fishing village of Olaikuda. There we continue along the sea. By taking a small path in the fishing village, we reach the shore bordered by flat rocks. We can continue very far on the coast. We hear only the surf and the wind that rustle palm coconut palms. Fishermen repair their nets.

The stroll along the seaside is nice, especially at sunset. We walk beneath the full moon in the warm air of the starry night. In the evening, we go to eat at the restaurant where we feast on an onion dosa and fried rice. And for dessert, we buy some pastries filled with honey. Another big day of road awaits us the next morning to go to Kanyakumari.

The Train to Rameswaram in Tamil Nadu

Pilgrimage to Vaishno Devi in Katra

I go for a new adventure in the north of Jammu, in the mountains of Kashmir. I decided to go on a pilgrimage to Vaishno Devi temple, one of the most important in India, in the very northern part of the country in Jammu and Kashmir. First, we missed the train because we were late. My friends claimed that there was an error in printing the ticket and the truth is that it just did not look clear.

Although it was still possible to see the last coach it was not easy to wait for the next one, since there is only one train a week. So we took a taxi to reach the train in another station, two hours from the city. But halfway, we decide it was better to fly to New Delhi. So we go back to Udaipur to pay and collect tickets for a flight that took off in three hours. We finally had the tickets and ran to the airport.

We reach Jammu at 2 in the afternoon of the next day. We only had to wait for the next train leaving in an hour to finally get to Katra, starting point of the pilgrimage to Vaishno Devi, but, it was not that simple either. The train was delayed and so it arrived after 5:30 pm and left the terminal after 6:00 pm.

Long before we arrived in Katra, the trip started on the train. A newlywed couple on honeymoon shares the berth across the way. The young woman hides her face. I see them sharing a meal in complete privacy. The neighbors opposite are two young sikhs, wearing the turban.

We reach the final destination almost at 9 o'clock at night.

Although I do not believe it, we just arrived at the place and saw the lights of the road. We entered an almost miraculous energy and an unappealable and urgent desire to raise once and for all, the last effort, we thought.

Day 2

The hotel makes us drop by car to the starting point. The state of Kashmir is riddled with police security in this busy place and we have to cross many checkpoints. The road is all paved. It is practically always a slope of between 30 and 45 degrees, although there are also stairs for the most trained.

The walk begins with a long journey of 14 km climb in alleys first lined by shops of all kinds selling medals, offerings, sweets, as well as the precious bottles of water. It must be said that at this time we are accompanied by a sun at 13 degrees. Further the route is quieter and the shops give way to beautiful mountain scenery.

The first half is shared with many horses that go straight and do not take off. The city of Katra shrinks at every turn and we meet horses and porters who bring back the most tired. Many elderly or disabled people are on their way to the summit, leaning on a stick bought some rupees lower. Only testimony of the accomplishment of the pilgrimage is a red dot on the forehead. After 6 hours on this obstacle course and almost without rest, we finally arrived!

The landscape at dawn is beautiful. It is a true caress to the soul that makes it feel that it has been worth it. My mind, which three hours earlier had been issuing unpronounceable characters, was also relieved and satisfied. I have some breakfast and obviously, we had to visit the temple and queue to enter, which almost is a kilometer long!

The difficult thing was not to make the queue, but to fight against those who got involved. It is a beautiful tradition that everyone comes to the queue on all sides, but not one or two at a time, but entire families. In the end, what could have been a wait of two hours maximum, became four.

After entering the temple everything is squeezed. Here, all eager to be close to the sculptures of the goddesses of the first two rooms, people only push towards them, without allowing advance or exit. The most bruised are the children who are lost among the half parts of the people and can not even breathe.

So, literally, we swim against the current, pushing back. The main altar in this temple is of Shri Mata Vaishno Devi Ji, which means the mother who fulfills everything her children wish. We are in a cave surrounded by a huge construction.

Inside the cave is the appearance of the goddess Mahalakshmi, in the form of three small stones representing the three manifestations of the goddess of Mata Maha Kali, Mata Maha Lakshmi and Mata Maha Saraswati. This place is hundreds of years old. In fact it is mentioned for the first time in the Mahabharata.

To enter the cave there is a tunnel where the water leaks. I do not know if it is of the drain or the mountain, but that does not matter to the faithful. They accumulate it in their hands and take it as holy water.

Already in front of the representations of the goddess, the security who guard them force us to pass quickly, also at the point of pushing. So there is not much time to see and pray. The photos there are forbidden. I finally meet the priest who after a few words puts a red dot on the forehead. So, in seconds, suddenly I felt very clear one thing of gratitude.

In the end, what does it matter what the goddess or god is called. What is undeniable is the profound bliss that gives the feeling of gratitude and we left. After the passage to the temple of the goddess, there remains 2.5 km climb to a second place erected following the attempt to intrude Bhairon Baba in his sanctuary. He was brought by Hanuman and Mata Vaishno Devi Ji cut off his head in this place. The goddess then decided that the visit of this second temple would be necessary to close the pilgrimage.

Many faithful come from all over the country to fulfill the words of their divinity. On the way of the cries of joys, songs, musicians, but also monkeys who roam freely, and many other animals.

After a little rest in the hotel, a short tour in the center of Katra and already it's time to head to the station and take the train back to Delhi. We return to flat land until 9 o'clock on the night of the next day from which we left, completing with this 20 intense hours of pilgrimage.

An Evening at Wagah Border Ceremony

We could have told you about Amritsar much earlier. The Wagah Border Ceremony happens at the only land border crossing between India and Pakistan, the two countries that fought a merciless war over Kashmir territory.

The simplest way would have been to go there from Dharamsala. It was mostly me who wanted to go. At that time, Amritsar was isolated from the rest of our desires and we had not yet planned much of our trip. We put Amritsar aside saying we'll see later. We finally waited to arrive in Rajasthan to hit a tedious trip to Punjab.

Upon arrival in Rajasthan, the trend was reversed. Drunk with the discomfort of transportation, I was ready to sacrifice Amritsar. We studied all the options, that is to say the car with driver (too expensive for us) and the sleeper bus. Logically, we chose the second option.

It may be hard to believe when I get there, but Amritsar will remain one of the best memories. Yet the city is ugly. All its colors disappeared under a layer of dirt and spread over the sad walls in shades of gray. As often in India, there are two cities in the city. There is the modern city that we have just crossed with its posh shopping centers and its roads populated with horns.

There is the old city that we have more widely surveyed, with its labyrinthine streets, mangy dogs and atmosphere of another time. In fact, Amritsar is a bit the opposite version of the picture of Dorian Gray. Deep in the abyss, from the black heart of the beast sprang beauty.

Sikhs hold a significant place in the history of the country. Before meeting them, I did not know much, and I cannot wait to learn more. Rarely has religion seemed so welcoming, respectful, and benevolent. Let me explain. We went directly to a pilgrim hostel where we knew that visitors were welcomed free of charge.

A young Sikh introduced us to the place where visitors were welcomed. There are three-bed rooms, rather rudimentary but with lockers and a shared bathroom. As we had arrived at lunchtime, we wanted to go to Guru Ka Langar, the canteen where Sikhs offer a meal to all their visitors, regardless of caste or wealth.

We asked our way to a tall elegant Shikh with beautiful blue eyes, giving us big smiles and led us to Guru Ka Langar. There, he went to another Sikh to guide us inside the building where thousands of people eat continuously at any time of the day. This experience was truly unforgettable, especially as the thali offered by the Sikh community was really good.

In the process, we made an appointment with the driver of a shared jeep to return the same day after the military practice at the Wagah-Attari border with Pakistan. The driver was over an hour late and we were starting to wonder if we had been ripped off as we had paid in advance. He finally come after a vain search to find a last passenger to fill his vehicle.

We left with four others at the border post and arrived right on time for the show but at the bottom of the stands, as many, had preceded us. I will try to explain with my own eyes what the ceremony consists of. The music starts. A soldier starts to set the mood! Soldiers, in ceremonial costume, follow each other, marching at a pace to the frontier. This happens alternately on each side.

The gestures are exaggerated, in order to impress. This parade has more to do with the effervescence of some sporting events. What we are witnessing is totally improbable, when we know the tensions that can reign between the two countries. It's a real cock fight before the closing of the door, and the descent of the flags.

An Indian soldier and a Pakistani soldier shout loudly and for a long time in a microphone before lifting the leg as high as possible and advancing all the way to the door. At the end of about twenty minutes, the doors of the border open. The flags are lowered simultaneously, to be then folded and brought back each of their side. The ceremony is over.

I did not really understand the stakes of the tradition, but it was really nice to see. Everyone was totally excited about this fight, and sang and danced! It was crazy enough, and a great moment of patriotism. I have the impression of an absurd mixture of diluted military exercise ready to swing into a wrestling match.

After this big nothing, we return to the Golden Temple that we still have not had time to visit. I decide to go alone to the temple at night. The place is beautiful and it is the first time that I feel at this point the influence of the sacred.

Even Benares will not have left me so alive. The play of light and fairy contrasts. There is the calm despite the affluence, with the beauty of the religious songs broadcast outside the temple. I go back to bed amazed by what I found.

An Evening at Wagah Border Ceremony

India, Nagaland and the Hornbill Festival

Until well into the last century, Nagaland remained one of very few places that challenged the stringency of the strictest maps. It is one of those blurred areas still to be mapped. Its name did not transcend the closed circle formed by some European geographical societies, eccentric philanthropists or adventurers and explorers. The dense jungles stretched tens of kilometers. It shelters several tribal groups that were largely alien to life outside their green borders. They kept alive a heritage they could not even touch of their own cultural identity.

And the plurality and diversity of this was not small. The ethnic human head hunters exhibited the sliced ​​trophy in the morongs (the communal houses of each village). The geometric motifs were tattooed on their faces proudly for each ravished head. Even those whose elaborate cosmogony intimately related every split of the human soul with some element of nature. There are tribes whose knowledge of the healing properties of local flora continues to amaze anthropologists and other experts.

But nothing lasts forever. In the last decades, missionaries of different orders have gone into the villages of these ethnic groups. Today, the Sunday Mass is celebrated. In the settlements that I visited, they smiled knowingly that in "my town" there are also churches. Although the electric light is as scanty and unstable as the coverage, mobile phones begin to appear. The lighters help to light the fires where the kitchen is cooked and the youth wear jeans and t-shirts with messages in English. Even so, even the most adults flee in terror and the children cry in terror when they see a white-skinned foreigner among their huts.

The second time I visited Nagaland I headed to the capital, Kohima. A few kilometers from it, we follow the route that made it known during the World War II by the bloody battle that was fought in it. Here the Hornbill festival was celebrated called thus by a native bird of the zone today in extinction. It is paradoxical to think that a homologous process affects today the own protagonists of the festival. The sixteen tribes of the state participate to which the opening to the neighboring zones has entailed. They begin to evaporate several of the customs and cultural traits that shaped their idiosyncrasy.

I confess that I walked to the event with some suspicion. I already weighed that do not run those romantic times of expeditions. In which even with the moral and ethical doubts that now arise about them, I would have loved to enlist. There was a decaffeinated show for tourists, with costumed actors performing choreographies. And I was very happy to be wrong. Evidently, the festival did not have the authenticity to see some ritual, ceremony or dance in its original context.

But after some hours among its participants, whom the illusion turned into children with adult bodies, I felt the innocent purity of those who met without more reason than enjoying the legacy that they have inherited genealogically. Each tribe represented in front of the other dances, popular games or various celebrations. Everyone laughed and clapped. Not without some irony, the same Konyaks that cut the last head in 1992 now staged before the descendants of the cut-throat ethnic group the same ritual with which they were raging before. Then they would share food, drink and laughter. And that, in some way, is also evolution.

Those days I become a naga, as the extreme generosity of these people did not make me feel otherwise. More curious for me than me for them, there were invitations to try their spicy dishes. They made sure that the piece of bamboo that was used as a glass overflowed with rice beer. I watched the shows sitting among them, chanting in their unpronounceable languages ​​the songs and hymns they taught me. When it is comfortable, time flies, and thus, almost without knowing, the festival ended. Among friends, I said goodbye to Nagaland the last night surrounding a huge bonfire, dancing with tribes.