When Gods Descend on Mylapore…

It is that time of the year when Gods descend in droves onto Mylapore in their best colours.  It was Navaratri all of last week and hence “Kolu” time in Chennai. This is that time of the year when dolls come out of shelves and get neatly arranged on well laid-out steps in many houses.

I was in Mylapore last weekend looking for some of these “Gods and Goddesses” for my mom. She is a Kolu (or Bommala Koluvu as we call it)  veteran of almost 30 years. Some pics here:

Never saw a Kolu-specfic Satya Sai Baba idol before! He must be the only human being to make it to any  Kolu steps!!!

All the big ones are made of papier mache and weigh much lesser than the smaller clay ones. But papier mache ones cost more than clay or p-o-p ones. Besides, they are more brittle and need extreme care. If stored carefully, they can last more than 30 years.

The South Mada Street

I was looking for something specific…and I was so dizzy upon finding it (and imagining the pleasure my mom would have at this acquisition) that I forgot the golden rule: Bargain hard! Don’t ask me how much I paid for it…almost a bomb!!! The Garuda Vahanam, a strong Sri Vaishnava icon (follow the white arrow in the pic).

This might be purely ladies stuff….but there is a good deal of opportunity to test one’s mythology trivia quotient. By the way, my mom prefers to do her kolu during Sankranti (Pongal). So it really works out well for me to do this shopping towards the last days of Navaratri…the rates tumble down.


4 comments so far

  1. Sriram on

    Good pics… and interesting read!

    PS: blog updated.. railfan material 😀

  2. Ranga on

    Sriram, Thanks. I am following your blog.

  3. Krishna Kumar.S on

    Exciting. I love Kolu. In my house, we have idols which are more than 50 years old. Nice to see that you remember old cultures. Very few people are like you Ranga. Nice writeup. Keep it up.

  4. Jaya on

    Wealso have idols of our national leaders
    thematic golus give way for innovationlast year we had akolu with all film names with meerato endhiranthis year had a different plan but we came to USA I always enjoyed keeping golu
    when we were young we used to have big golus
    had lots of fun we were 9 children big house what a golden memory vvooww

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