It was slightly warm, Punjabi music was playing over the speaker system, and the colours; so many colours, were being thrown up in the air. Children were dancing and laughing together – it is Holi. Let’s celebrate!
However, I am not in India. I am in London, at a small pop up event called Holi in the City, run by the staff at Cinnamon Kitchen, which is in the Capital from March 6th to March 14th, giving Londoners and visitors a taste of what Holi is all about.
After Diwali (the festival of lights), Holi is one of the most important events in the Hindu Calendar, and is known as the festival of colour, or the festival of love. It is a celebration of good over evil, and of the start of Spring. Each year, people take to the streets, all over India, and throw colourful powder over each other. Water is also used, so things get incredibly messy. It is now celebrated in various parts of the World.
I first had a taste of this kind of festival, at a charity run in New Zealand, called Run For Colour, were I ran 5km around a park and got splattered with colourful powder at various intervals – it was great fun.
This year, my sister and I went to experience Holi in London. On arrival, we were given a white overall (almost like a painting suit), but do not be deceived – this will not keep the powder from getting on your clothes. My leggings, t-shirt, and virtually whole body was covered in colour afterwards.
We were then each given 2 large packs of colourful powder, and entered the tent, which had about 6 others in it and we just went for it, for about 30 minutes.
A wonderful way to let off some steam, and spread some happiness.
Things to know about Holi in the City
Location: Cinnamon Kitchen is at 9 Devonshire Square. The nearest tube stations are Liverpool Street (Central line), Aldgate (Circle and Metropoitan lines) and Aldgate East (Hammersmith and City line)
- This event is still on until March 14th. Book your tickets here
- Tickets cost £8 for a 30 minute session, although you can buy other packages which include food and drink
- There kids only sessions (for the little people in your life)
- Bring a change of clothes – the powder gets everywhere (and I mean everywhere – up your nose, and in your ears)
- Wipes may also be beneficial to get the stuff off
- Close your mouth (the powder doesn’t taste nice)
- Sunglasses may be a good idea
One day, I would love to be in India for the Holi Festival, but for now – London will suffice. Click here, to learn more about the Holi Festival.