Uttarayan, Makar Sankranti, Kite Festival are different names for this festivals we celebrate on January 14th every year. It marks the end of the winter solace according to the Vedic calendar. If you grew up in Gujarat, here are the few things you associate Uttarayan with:
1. Flying patang(kites), on roof top terrace of your home called “agaasi.” People prepare for this day’s event in advance. As you purchase the “patangs”(kites) and the “doro”(thread the kites are attached to, it is treated with very fine broken glasses so it helps it when you try to “cut” someone else’s patang out of your way). This is exactly what the term “Kaypo che” means ( to cut someone else’s patang/kite).
2. Catching Patang: this was one of my favorite things to do growing up since I couldn’t fly a kite very well, catching patang that was cut was the best part of my day.
3. Flying Gubbaras: lanterns people fly in the air at night.
4. Loud music: There is always hindi music blasting from different roof tops.
5. Papdi no lot, Undhiyu, Chikki, mammra na ladoo, tal na ladoo: Gujarati people associate different foods with different festivals and Chikki(different types of brittles) are mainly eaten during this time.
Here is a video from www.barodian.com of Uttarayan celebration in Baroda, Gujarat from 2013, watch towards the end you will see the roof tops and lots of people on the “agaasi”!
Happy Makarsankranti to you all!