What: Holi, also known as the Festival of Color is an Indian festival that celebrates love, the victory of good over evil, and the coming of spring. The festival was originally celebrated in India but today it is celebrated in India, the United States, the United Kingdom, the Caribbean and many other countries with large Indian Diasporic populations. The festival has also gained international popularity among non-Indian populations for its bright colors, great music, and overall welcoming vibe.
The festival consists of music, dance, yoga, meditation, singing, cows, food and a lot of fun.
Where: ISKON of DC, Potomac, Maryland
When: May 6, 2018
Why: It was my first Holi festival and how could I say no to dancing and singing and throwing powdered paint at strangers all in the name of love? It was a pleasure to be able to praise with my neighbors and I am thankful to ISKON of DC for opening their door every year to the community.
I got off the bus and heard the drums from the parking lot. I walked into the festival and a beautiful old Indian lady with large plump hands smeared yellow powder all over my face and chest with a smile "Happy Holi". It messed up my lipstick and got into my mouth; the celebrations began.
I threw powder at strangers, I ate a ton of vegetarian food, I pet cows, I joined a meditation circle and chanted "Hare Krishna" at least 67 times. I DANCED for what seemed like hours.
In the last hour the energy lifted and everyone danced and jumped as the singers sang louder and louder and faster and faster. The powder was flying nonstop and obscured the sky. Strangers took pictures of me and I took pictures of strangers. There were a lot of handsome men, well I think they were handsome, I couldn't even tell what color people were because everyone's face was blue or pink or yellow or a rainbow. There was one song I remember feeling in my bones. The singer was a beautiful young slim girl with a deep enchanting voice. She was swaying on the stage and making eye contact as this heavy godly sound emanated from her center.
I remember dancing to her voice with my eyes closed and spinning in circles. I felt drunk off of the sound and as I was spinning a man threw powder at me just as my face was turning to him. I inhaled the entire red cloud. I choked and coughed but I didn't stop dancing.
30 minutes later I was throwing up in the parking lot. It was a red blend of curry rice and pakora. Disgusting, but worth it.
Holi 2019 is definitely happening.