Festive winter

Flights Of Fantasy

[ M Panging Pao ]

The onset of winter season ushers in a period of merrymaking, celebrations and general happiness. Winter is generally marked by festivals, picnics, family get-togethers and marriages. Winters in the Northeast, especially in Arunachal Pradesh, are a delight to experience. The weather is cool and salubrious, the air is crystal clear, and the surrounding snow-clad mountains are a sight to behold. During clear winter nights, one can spot millions of stars sparkling in the clear sky. The general mood is festive and buoyant.
The landscape of valleys and meadows are a treat to the eyes, the numerous rivers & streams are crystal clear; the light breeze caresses the body, refreshing the mind, body and soul. This pristine environment attracts thousands of tourists, making a beeline to these spots to see and experience these pleasures for themselves.
The pleasant weather and pristine environment attracts large numbers of avid picnickers. Many picnics are organised by various families, clans, organisations and classmate groups. Picnic parties from neighbouring states can also be spotted along the countryside, at most available stream, river or valley. Along roads one can spot buses and other vehicles, full of eager and expectant passengers buzzing ahead with music blaring.
Most important family/clan events like get-togethers, marriages, and death anniversaries are organised during winter to make the most of the ideal weather and scenic landscapes.
A few regions of Arunachal experience snowfall in winters. Many tourists from neighbouring states rush in to see and experience the snow in the mountains and hills in places like Tawang, Mechuka and Mayudia.
One can hear singing, dancing and laughter from folks seated around customary bonfires. Winter is the season to celebrate festivals, give thanks, welcome the incoming year and get cozy bundled under blankets, sweaters and the warmth of familial affection.
Winter also sees the availability of green leafy vegetables, fresh and delicious fruits like apple, oranges, kiwis, valencia, and persimmon. Flowers, like dahlia, roses, petunia and marigold also bloom, turning the landscape more picturesque. Enthusiasts are able to spot large numbers of migratory birds from as far as Russia and Europe.
Winter is also the season for examinations and tuitions. The winter coziness and warmth leads to lethargy, laziness and associated diseases. However, if winter is here, can summer be far behind? Wishing all readers a very happy year and decade starting 2020! (The contributor is retired Group Captain, Indian Air Force)