Belief - Beyond Comprehension

Every visit to our farm house brings in new experience, as it is set in a remote village. The native villagers mostly live along with nature, may be that could be due to non-urbanization! Look at what I was intrigued at this time!
These are plantain stems. First I thought these people were slicing the stem and drying it up to make crisps, but I have never heard of such a thing. Well, we normally add these in daal or finely chop and toss it up and use as a side dish along with rice based meal. Now, curiosity got the better of me and I wanted to know what exactly it was, so started chatting up with the lady who was deftly making these stuff. She was equally excited to explain what she was doing!

They were oil lamp wicks, which is used in Hindu special prayers and it was called as வாழைத்தண்டு திரி (Vazhaithandu Thiri)! Meticulously she showed me how to make it...here we go

Slice the stem > pull out the fiber > wrap it > dry it. Roll the dried ones and make a wick, whenever you want to light the lamp. It is believed that lighting lamp with this wick will be relinquish any form of curse! 

Colorful Gooseberries n Folklore

Gooseberry! admit it, mouth waters at the very thought of it and the second you take a bite, you have a pursed lips and screwed up eyes, because of the inherent sour taste! 

When we came across these colorful berries at the road side in Yelagiri (a laid back high-land in Tamil Nadu in India), we just stopped by to try it out! To our pleasant surprise, we were told that these are local gooseberries (நெல்லிக்காய்)! Until then, I h'v thought that the color of these berries are shades of pale green. 

They used to sell gooseberries in front of school. All we had to do was shell out a small change and get a hand full of small sized அரெ-நெல்லிக்காய் or a big நெல்லிக்காய், of course with all the works including salt, chilli powder and blackish coarse mustard. 
Our World
If you grew up learning Tamil, am pretty sure you have heard Ovvaiyar (ஒவ்வையார்) and gooseberry (நெல்லிக்கனி/நெல்லிக்காய்) at least once! The folklore says that king Adiyamaan (அதியமான் ) once got a gooseberry which is supposed to increase his life span. The king after deep contemplation gave this to ஒவ்வையார் believing that increasing her lifespan means good to the society at large as she is not only a great poetess, but strives to bring peace among neighbouring rulers too! Such a noble hearted ruler!

Look at the ripe ones! They were not sweet, but certainly had a crispy tangy taste with a punch.

ஒரு வேளை ஒவ்வையார் உண்ட நெல்லிக்கனி இப்படி இருந்திருக்குமோ?

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