A Photo Story from the Streets of Mumbai: Ganesha Comes Home!

5th September, 2016: Ganesh Chaturthi Festival, Ganesh Sthapana || A Photo Story from the streets of Mumbai -->

Sitting amid a heap of yellow fragrant flowers, she has been making garlands even before the sun came up. Business is bright, so is her dedication towards her work. She is oblivious to my presence, sparing just a quick smile before getting engrossed in her work again. Work that began too early for her today and work that is not going to end anytime soon.

A flower seller, Ganesh Chaturthi Day 1 Ganesh Sthapana Mumbai
Do not disturb: I am busy!

It's a celebration out there, on the streets! People get together, dance and sing to ear piercing beats of dhols and drums. It's chaotic, the traffic is disturbed but for the faithfuls, it's a time of carnival, merry-making ...

Gulal in the air, Ganesh Chaturthi Day 1 Ganesh Sthapana Mumbai
Chaos or carnival?

... And it's a time of prayer. Bundles of incense sticks waft clouds of fragrant smoke into the air. The unmistakable scents rising up from the flowers intertwine in between. The diya light flickers in ecstatic glow.

The wait has been long, almost a year... it has warmed our hearts.

A woman waits to perform aarti, Ganesh Chaturthi Day 1 Mumbai
Ganesha at Ganesh Chaturthi Day 1 Ganesh Sthapana Mumbai
Where have you been, O Ganesha!

It's time to go home but before the remover of obstacles, the granter of wishes is welcomed in His temporary residence, the Mumbai pandals and homes, His face is covered with a cloth, usually soft and silky. Like a little child, they protect Him from the many prying eyes lurking on the roads like me. But I am not to be blamed... and hey. It's not just me. He is charming, endearing, mesmerising, He's a darling and they know it. Everyone is eager to get just one glimpse.

Ganesha being carried towards home, Ganesh Chaturthi Day 1 Ganesh Sthapana Mumbai
Ganesha on a cart, Ganesh Chaturthi Day 1 Ganesh Sthapana Mumbai
Have patience, my girl.

It's the first day of one of the most awaited festivals of India and one of the most popular in Mumbai, Ganesh Chaturthi. The much loved elephant God, the cute and mischievous, and one of my favourites - Ganpati Bappa will be home soon, seated like a bosom friend, an intimate confidante, amid His favourite people - with you and me.

I am so excited to greet, meet and talk to Him
wherever I am going to find Him in the next 11 days.
You are coming, right?

Post a Comment


  1. Yes, dear Arti! Excited to visit Mumbai Ganesha Festival with you. Beautiful beginning bringing all the Ganesh Chaturthi zeal. :-)

  2. Nice to read.
    Happy Ganesh Chaturthi to you and your family.
    Beautiful pics, Keep sharing.
    Ganpati Bappa Morya

  3. Lovely series!

    Ganapati Bappa Moraya!!

  4. Happy ganesh Chaturthi! The excitement and joy of the festival is infectious ! :) Thanks for giving a glimpse of the scenes behind all the celebrations! :)

  5. Such a beautifully written post dear. Heartwarming and great captures :)

  6. nice read.awesome pictures nicely captured

  7. Lovely pictures. Thank you for bringing Ganesha to us :)

  8. You have captured the essence of Mumbai during the auspicious festival. Thanks for the photo essay and the virtual tour, dear. Stay blessed... :-)

  9. The spirit of Ganpati beautifully captured in your pics.

  10. That's an interesting post on Mumbai catching one of the many moods of the city.


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