Ooty has a month long carnival during May with events ranging from cultural shows to boat races to the grand crescendo of the Flower Show. No one quite knows what’s going on , where and for whom all this is stage managed. The tourist department probably gives out a few notices and passes and proceeds to make merry.
I suddenly thought that all this is going on right here and we (the locals) never participate. We have a lovely lake right in the town and the only time we ever see it, is when guests arrive. So Geetha and I decided we should go see the Boat Pageant. We’d missed the Boat Race by a couple of days.
The board with listing of all the ‘Summer Festival’ said 10 a.m. With lots of commitments of both sides, we ended up at the Lake only at 11.30. The board there said ‘ 11a.m. -1’ and we thought ‘just in time’. We scurried dazedly through the crowds to the lakeside – so many shops and music and side attractions seemed to have been added. There were the usual boats on the lake. No signs of any pageantry.
Eating icecreams and strolling around we discovered a little tent with lots of chairs lined up and some harried looking officials who wouldn’t and couldn’t answer our question of when?
Faithlessly , we left at 1.00 after having had our day out and being cheered by the sight of all the crowds and the half-happiness of people on Holiday. And behind us , the loudspeakers called to the faithful to come and look at the pageantry. We turned around and saw a few boats decorated with balloons and some flowers.
We hadn’t missed much but yet the idea to actually go out and do something different filled us out.