Ode To Abu

Sunday, 12 January 2014

Mylapore Festival Day 3 Morning at the Park

Stopped by at the park to catch the children's competitions. While parents waited patiently, the kids were in deep concentration in their chess games and art and craft workshops. 

Here's a shot of two young huns in full attention. The fella in the red pants employed a style while swishing his opponent's pieces off the board! A volunteer keeps an eye on the game. Some over enthusiastic volunteers were telling the kids what moves to make, and kids being kids, responded with 'Uncle, I will decide what to do next!'

Sundaram Finance's team say they love working in the open air for a change. Here are some young ladies busy filling out the certificates with the names of children who participated in the events.

A close up of the certificates. The MF logo changes every year. 

Colourful festival banners dot the park.

Mini chess champs in action. Nice wooden board. 

A paper quilling workshop is in action mode. The festival is getting more registrations than it can handle so batch sizes per workshop is limited. The teacher is patient and handles each child's query with simple instructions.

A sample of what the kids are to eventually make. A card signifying the harvest festival of Pongal.

Saw these cute turtles painted on tiles. These were from the art workshop and were being zealously guarded by the parents of kids who moved on to the quilling workshop or were running about playing in the open air. A rare sight these days!

I quite liked this red one of the lot and smilingly enquired about it to the lady sitting next to it. Hemantha Prasad of Chinmaya Vidyalaya school's rather dour-faced mother seemed a tad grumpy in the morning!

Painted tiles being laid out to dry on the park benches while children kept themselves busy with the latest craft to catch everyone's fancy - paper quilling.

The volunteers wear this cap so they are easy to spot. On Day 1, a lady was yelling at the top of her voice at the Sannidhi square at a little girl. On enquiring what was the matter, she said the girl was wearing a Mylapore Festival Tshirt (design of a peacock) and yet  did not help her out. I politely suggested she could wear a Tshirt too if she liked and she shouted 'Why are you defending her!!' It was all rather amusing. I explained that the little girl might have bought the Tshirt as a souvenir and was very much entitled to wear one and the volunteers were the ones with the MF logo and cap. She went on to scream for no rhyme or reason. A college student volunteer came by and asked why she was being so loud. The lady then turned on to a fresh target! The volunteer replied that she was not deaf. The lady began screaming some more insisting that volunteers were useless and no one had come up to her to enquire what she wanted! So next year's set of volunteers should consider enrolling into a mind-reading course starting this year to be fully armed! ;-)

If only she had saved all her energy and come out with her enquiry in the 1st place. It was about the photo exhibition on 100 years of cinema and she wanted to know the venue. I gave her a pamphlet and mentioned the location but she would have none of it and walked off screaming all the way!

This cloth bag initiative by the organisers is a bid to promote an environmentally conscious lifestyle by encouraging carriers of plastic bags to dispense with them and switch to cloth or natural fibre bags. They come in different colours for each day of the fest. I got a blue one. Ironically, I almost never carry plastic bags, but I was given one by the MF team when I bought the brass davara set! I had to accept because I could not carry all my purchases. The cloth bag mafia caught me and made me exchange it! :-D

That's Vaishnavi Srinivasan, an enthusiastic young lady from the corporate communications team of Sundaram Finance. She shied away from photos but impressed with her confidence and explanations of the festival's objectives.

The quillers on the last leg of their workshop. 

Soaking in the ambience of a walk in the park on a beautiful morning. Peaceful and serene.


  1. Hi Sumitha Pai
    I thoroughly enjoyed your write-up and photos of the festival. Yes, some people do not understand the concept of street festival and demand for all attention. Though I missed the festival this year your photos and blog make me feel that I am there! Thanks a lot.