Craziness. That is summing up in one word. Fete de Ganesha is the festivities organized by Parisian Ganesha devotees. Does it coincide with Ganesha Chathurthi? I am not an expert. But this year, it coincided with the period. The main attraction of this festival is the procession which starts from the Ganesha temple returning back to the starting point after taking a stroll through the narrow local streets infested with Srilankan shops. Though I call it "Little India", this is not true. This is "Little Srilanka".
The streets and the shops were decorated for the day with Tamil and Hindi devotional songs flowing out along with the smell of incense. There were a lot of jasmine sellers on the street. Parisians have come in hordes to see the festivities. Their curiosity factor added to the sales of jasmine. Once bought, jasmines were tied in different innovative styles which invoked laughter. The traffic came to a standstill. The local press covered the event. Press and volunteers controlling the traffic had yellow badges either hanging from their pockets or tied around the arm.
The procession with the floats were the main attraction. Each of the float is preceded by people playing Indian instruments or the dancers. The bigger floats were pulled by people. There was one float pulled by men and another pulled by women. It was fun to watch people dancing and pulling with religious fervor.
Some Parisians looked at the event from their balcony.
The procession lasts more than 2 hours. The streets are so thickly packed that you can hardly move. I didn't wait for the entire drama to unfold. I moved away with lots of picture and memories to write about. But soon I realized the restaurants were charging "Ganesha" specials in their bills.