Of fairy tales and pumpkin coaches
This is probably overdoing it. Three posts in a day. But since the idea is to write when one can, what does it matter. Plus, the first two were just vanity!
I am not sure how many of you saw this really grand advertisement for the 'Cinderella' pavadai, by the RmKV store - a little girl wears a pavadai that spreads out in a perfect geometric circle around her as she sits.
I saw it. And it makes me want to be a little girl again, so I could wear one of those pavadais. The best thing about wearing a pavadai was being able to twirl yourself around and then sit, with the skirts ballooning about you. THAT was one of the many pleasures of my South Indian childhood.
We would even have competitions at that- my sister, the cousins, neighbours, me- all of us who wore 'pavadais', turning and swirling till the world became a blur and the skirt, a balloon! The kids that got their skirts to swell most won, naturally. When we got a little older, the losers began to console themselves, "It has to do with the cut of the cloth." But, their faces still fell as their skirts did.
Whatever else we did, we din't call it the Cinderella pavadai. Today, 'pavadai wearing' is not for me... dredging deep into my memory's recesses, I remember we used to call the swirling-ballooning ritual 'thattamaalai.'
But, when did 'thattamaalai' become Cinderella?
Perhaps, in its re-invented avatar the pavadai has morphed into an ill-treated step-sister raking the coals in the fireplace. Then, when you wear the Cinderella pavadai, perhaps you'll get one glass slipper free, and a pumpkin coach to ride on too!