Home Sketch Kite Flying in Gujarat | Sketch Away: Travels with my sketchbook

Kite Flying in Gujarat | Sketch Away: Travels with my sketchbook


It was unbelievable to be in Surat for the 2 days of Uttarayan, the kite flying pageant. Surat’s kite flying fame is rivaled solely by the celebrity of its excellent delicacies (which I ate continuous on my go to because of my great household, however that’s a special story).

In order for you a full set of kites to fly by way of each days, you’ll most likely go to one of many distributors in Patang Galli within the outdated metropolis to purchase kites in bulk (I used to be advised 10-15 kites per individual per day is the norm). However each avenue nook within the metropolis has a kite vendor, for any last-minute purchases.

This vendor within the Adajan neighborhood carries kite, reels of manja or kite string and noisemakers you could blow on each time your kite cuts down one other kite. This little lady arrived along with her dad and took her time choosing a kite to go along with her pink reel of manja.

A part of the drama of the kite flying pageant is that you simply don’t simply fly kites. Your kite string is coated with powdered glass, so you’ll be able to minimize down a rival kite as you battle on within the skies.

This glass-coated string is produced within the outdated a part of town the place males sporting face masks to maintain glass mud out take enormous reels of string and run it by way of a combination of water, glue, and finely powdered glass. The coated string is allowed to dry on giant spindles made with bicycle wheels after which transferred to smaller handheld spindles you could purchase.

I spent an Uttarayan night on the terrace of an condo. The rooftops of residences throughout us have been stuffed with kite flyers. And the place there’s a gaggle of individuals, there’s a celebration with music and meals. Our rooftop had a stall serving 165 totally different egg-centric dishes, all made to order when you waited. Most concerned inexperienced garlic, and tons of Amul butter and cheese.

You possibly can inform a kite flyer by their fingers which might be taped as much as stop cuts from the manja. Each kite flyer wants an assistant who holds and unravels their spool of manja as they want it. There was numerous discuss of kite-tying strategies as kites obtained minimize down and changed wiht new ones. Some types of tying provide you with extra management over the flight path, and others allow you to dodge and dance extra freely within the sky. If you wish to appear completely within the know, ask a kite-flyer “What’s your patang (kite) tying fashion? Are you a 0-0 or a 1-0?”

I hoped to see the famed kites lit by lanterns which might be historically flown on the finish of the day as darkness descends. However sadly, they’ve been changed by big LED kites. Nonetheless, my Uttarayan expertise was each bit as magical as I imagined it to be.

About Suhita Shirodkar

obsessive-sketcher. graphic designer.


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