Many days before the
festival of Diwali has
arrived, it’s planning and
preparation begins in full
swing. Excitement and
enthusiasm is palpable as
markets buzz with lively
shoppers raring with lists
New clothes are usually bought for members of the family. After great deliberation, each member gets to buy what is of their choice. New linen, upholstery and artefacts are also selected to help decorate the house. The decoration of the house is very important on Diwali. After all, when you are inviting Goddess Laxmi home, you would not want her to feel disappointed. New lamps and shades, a fresh coat of paint and artefacts are also timed around Diwali.
As part of the celebration of Diwali, flowers, fruits, lamps and lights, and fireworks are bought. This requires a fairly large budget, as enough supplies must be stocked to last all five days of Diwali. It is believed that if Diwali is celebrated on a grand scale, Goddess Laxmi will be pleased and ensure the family is blessed adequately.
Purchases now extend to sweets, dry fruits and novelties. The sweets and dry fruits need to be bought and served to guests who come to visit and greet. A portion is also kept aside for gifting. Sweets and dry fruits are among the most popular
Diwali Gifts. Well in advance, people are also seen buying gifts for friends and family who are overseas or in different cities so they may be sent out to them in time. It is also common for people outside to send
Gifts to India to reach their extended families.
Gifts are wonderful gestures that bind everyone in this all encompassing festival.
Just like Christmas Shopping in the west, Diwali Shopping in India can never quite be over until the last day. Items required for the puja need to be bought a day in advance, and on the day of Dhan Teras, jewellery stores are heaving with people purchasing gold and silver. Diwali festivities are seen continuing right through until all five days are over, and the festival finally bids its final farewell.
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