Saturday, January 14, 2006


The evening of Uttrayan!

The gathering of the friends kind of continues in the evening. For the last 2 years this has been happening at my friends Niral and Pallavi’s house.

After some general merriment, we get down to the serious business of flying the tukkal. This is a heavy kite that is flown with a very strong and sharp thread and after it gathers a decent height, paper lanterns with candles in them are attached at various intervals.

Normally you will see 4 to 8 lanterns on each line. Last year our gang managed to put up 13 lanterns. This year we broke our own record and put up 16 lights. And it was a breathtaking sight.

If you aren’t careful, by the time you get to the last few lanterns, some of the previous ones start to burn, so you can’t afford to take too long about it. If you put them too close together then the kite and string can’t take the weight. So it’s all a matter of moving fast and precisely.

The other thing that you have to be very careful about is predators; people who fly normal kites and attack the tukkal trying to bring it down. To safeguard against this, there are usually at least 2 friends who will fly kites on either side of the tukkal at great heights to get rid of any of these predators, sort of like scouts.

As you can see it is all really good fun.


EYE said...

hey this is a real nice blog on festivals! Missed Uttarayan, this time. My favourite festival is diwali.

twinkledave2710 said...

thank you for writing this blog , i really loved reading your blog and thats why i am also sharing it on my website on the page of Tukkal so that other curious people can get perfect insight about it.

you covered all technical aspect of the tukkal flying which will definitely be useful for many.
i was ones a predator like you mentioned when i was a kid but now i feel Tukkals should not be interfered with and the kite flying Tukkal shall be spared of kite fights.