Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, May 4:
Odias have a ‘Yeh Dil Maange More’ moments all the time. Odisha Sun Times lists out the top 6 things an Odia just cannot get enough of.
- Dahibara & Gupchup
Every Odia worth his/her name is a fan of daahi bara and gupchup. Hunger or no hunger, nothing is more satisfying than devouring daahi bara on a hot afternoon. Similarly, gupchup competitions wih friends are fond memories of school and college days. One can reach the saturation point with dahi bara and gupchup, but there is no saying ‘no’ to the dahi bara’s dahi paani (curd water) or the tangy water of gupchup. Every gulp of that dahi paani and tangy water makes one ask for more, no matter how spicy.
What is a perfect Sunday afternoon for most Odias? A bowlful of pakhaala with curd, mashed potatoes and fried fish that results in a good, loud burp and an eventual yawn. Sleep pangs slowly take over the senses, thus resulting in a good catnap. Most shops in Odisha wear a deserted look during afternoons because shopkeepers eat lunch and nap for a while. Surely, an Odia can never get enough of this siesta.
More time for assignments
Students across the state need ‘extra’ time for everything—assignments, exams, projects and what not. No matter how long summer vacation, Dussehra break or winter holidays are, the night before school reopening day is when everybody remembers unfinished school or college work. Midnight oil is burnt till the wick turns to ashes. Thus, begins the endless flow of excuses and pleadings before the teacher to push the deadline by a few days. In a state like Odisha, we celebrate 13 festivals in 12 months, and in lieu of this, get an extra holiday. But of course, there is always some homework or project pending. After all, a student’s life is far from easy.
The elixir of life for most Odias: Tea. We drink tea when we are happy, we drink tea when we are under stress and we drink tea when we want to answer the nature’s call. Drinking tea and shaking heads in exasperation while reading the morning paper is one of the sacred rituals of Odia households. Intense discussions and brainstorming sessions happen over tea in Omfed tea stalls all over Odisha, day and evening. Tea is our all-weather friend. Period.
The Lemon-Chilli Duo
In villages, a day in the week is reserved for ‘haata’ (market) where vegetables are purchased for a household for an entire week. Most Odias, even those living in the towns and cities follow the same trend. Shopkeepers and consumers alike haggle over prices, size and look of the vegetables and even the beam balance that weighs the commodity. After all quibbling, it is common practice for the shopkeeper to throw in a couple of lemons, a bunch of coriander leaves and a handful of chillis. And the bargaining begins again. People ask for more chillis, a couple more lemons and an extra bunch of ‘dhaniya’ and the shopkeeper begins to quote how expensive lemons and chillis have become. Finally, a deal is struck. But no vegetable tote bag in an Odia household is complete without the sprinkling of lemon and chilli.
The world might not recollect the state of Odisha in India, but everyone knows Puri, the abode of Lord Jagannath. Odias need no excuse to go to Puri and visit the Jagannth temple. Even on official visits, government bureaucrats make it a point to visit the temple and pay respects to the holy triumvirate. It is considered to be a grave mistake to be in Puri and not do the darshan. One does not have to seek an auspicious hour and the massive crowds, who throng the temple 365 days a year, do not matter to make a trip to Puri. Frail septuagenarians, differently-abled individuals, tiny tots, women and men all long for the darshan of the Lord and his siblings. And even after the darshan, one’s hunger for more time at the altar is far from quenched.