Celebrating Teej with Women Who Can Dance

Most people in Nepal follow Hinduism (80%) and Buddhism (10%), but this country is known for its religious tolerance and harmony, which I think the rest of the world can learn a lot from.

This passed weekend, I was lucky enough to get invited by my friend Ashmita to her grandmother's to celebrate Teej, the most famous festival celebrated by Nepali Hindu women.

It's a festival that celebrates marital bliss and the long life of their husbands.

 Ashmita, clearly impressing with her dance moves.

Ashmita, clearly impressing with her dance moves.

We danced. We sang. And we feasted (dar). The women had to fast a couple days from then.

 A dish of rice, lentils, potatoes, yellow beans, edamame, bamboo. Rice pudding for a snack.

A dish of rice, lentils, potatoes, yellow beans, edamame, bamboo. Rice pudding for a snack.

 Ashmita (left) trying to teach me some Hindi dance numbers. I'm clearly a professional.

Ashmita (left) trying to teach me some Hindi dance numbers. I'm clearly a professional.

 Ashmita's grandmother clearly "killin' it" on the dance floor and me looking like an idiot, ha.

Ashmita's grandmother clearly "killin' it" on the dance floor and me looking like an idiot, ha.

As soon as I walked inside, Ashmita told me all about the festival. We made our way to the roof and as I approached, dozens of women and kids smiled and greeted me with Namaste (hello). 

And Ashmita's grandmother Ruku, who lives in Maligaun, gave me two green & red bangles.

 Ashmita and her grandmother.

Ashmita and her grandmother.

The colour green is for luck. And red, well...Teej is a small red insect that comes out of the soil during the rainy season and I hear it's the reason most women wear red during festival time.

Check out how I saw the festivities: (Ashmita's family was super pumped to get family photos.)

I am in love with this family. They're so warm and welcoming. I have to admit, knowing little Nepali worried me, but once I picked up my camera they were loving the attention and communication become that much easier. 

 Clearly, a selfie of Ashmita and I. No one can figure my Nikon out, ha.

Clearly, a selfie of Ashmita and I. No one can figure my Nikon out, ha.

'Til next time. Over and out.

              - B.