I had gone to my native villages for Thai-p-poosam. It is an important local festival in South Tamilnadu. Wherever the Tamils are, Thaippoosam is celebrated with zest. Thaippoosam festivals in Penang, Malaysia and Mauritius are tourist attractions in those countries.
The practice in our village is to carry the Kavadi from our village to Kundrakkudi, about 10 kms away. Every half an hour or so, we stop at predetermined places, sing (rather read) the songs in praise of Murugan, accept the offerings from devotees waiting and then proceed. The kavadi starts at around 9.00 AM and reaches Kundrakkudi by 01.00 PM. By then the roads are so hot that it starts hurtin your feet real bad, and the weight of the Kavadi (must be about 3-4 kgs) starts pressing on the shoulder. Then we have to climb up the hill (not very difficult, as it is only a small hill) and present the offerings we bring in the Kavadi to the God. This year there were 16 kavadis from our village. I can't say that it was a religious experience, but it sure is a good community building exercise. The clans have to get together under some pretext to foster the relationship within the community. Every male member of the family has to carry it atleast once, and this year was my turn.
Next day we went to the Malaiya-k-Kovil temple near my mother's village. This is the ruling deity for many villages around this area.
That is one of the Gods from the neihbouring village coming to the Malaiya-k-Kovil.
What is a village festival without these colourful sweets.