This Good Friday, I woke up neither at home nor at college, but was somewhere between both. I reached home by 11 o’ clock after 36 hours of tiresome train journey. The gate of my home and of the nearby houses were decorated by serial bulbs. Seeing the uniformity of the bulbs present, I guessed that it might have been done by some committee from church.
I missed a few things this year. We usually go for parihara pradakshanam in the morning. It is basically a procession which covers whole of the parish. The strong ones (physically and spiritually) go for pathinaalu palli pradakshanam (14 church procession). It starts by 6 in the morning and ends by 2 in the afternoon. And the enthusiastic ones go to Malayattoor (A hill where, we believe, St. Thomas visited)
Owing to the fast we observe (which started with a full day fast for us Keralites and which begins as 3 day celebration-carnaval for Goan people) , no chicken and no prawn was there for lunch but it was great with few special vegetarian dishes prepared by my mother.
Climate, this year, was not as good as those of the last few years and it was really warm and we were all very sweaty. Unlike the usual system of pray, pray and continue to pray, this time we prayed, drank sarbath (a drink with flavour, sugar and lemon), prayed and continued. Mass started by 5 in the evening. Bible reading, which told the same story every year, never got boring. We waited in lines to touch and kiss the cross and also for the Holy Communion.
Nagari kaanikkal (I guess the meaning is showing the city/place) was the next event. In this we walk in procession with a statue of the body of Jesus (Normally, when a person die, we walk in a similar procession from the home of the deceased to the church carrying his body). I was walking along with my parents carrying a lighted candle. All the bulbs mentioned in the beginning were lit and the street was beautiful as heaven (as we imagine it). There was good tablos near the street representing death of Jesus and The Last Supper. Malayalees may remember a similar tablo in the film "Amen". I was very happy to see my old friends (with whom I studied in the Sunday Catechism class), many with big beards and crazy haircuts. On seeing the young ones I was feeling like Nivin Pauly of “Oru Vadakkan Selfie” – ‘Valuthaayi kuttyolokke’.
After the procession, we came back to church. There was a huge queue of people waiting to kiss the statue of Jesus. The famous “Puthen Pana” song by Arnos Pathiri was being played in the background. (Hear this on youtube.. the music is just amazing. The lyrics, even more so). The last prayers (which was in Malayalam this time, although it used to be in Latin) were done and we parted to our homes.