On the dusk of colorful Lomba,two of my friends decided to have Lomba dinner together. They loaded buckwheat dumplings to the brim of their stomach. Riding on a Chetak Bajaj scooter, upon reaching babesa expressway, much to the joy driven by festive mood, they fail to recall the presence of bump.The one sitting at back threw the inside dumpling out, like cricket ball off the pitch.
Jokes apart,there is always this curiosity in being a child raised in Haap and Parop’s family. Just like what my Angay did when she was young and agile; we use to put together all requisite bits and pieces ranging from plant species to finest costumes before the twilight sets in.The Lue torma (human figure made from flour cake representing our good being) clothed in its luxury outfit is surrounded by nine important grains. With handpicked attire such as brocade and silk etc,the lighted butter lamp and chibchey(ritual cake prayer) signifies a humble gesture of all our goodwill wishes for the fruitful new coming year.
When the night crawls in, it is time for Lue's departure.Lues from every household are believed to be setting their expedition together.We reach Lue to a certain space so they can catch up their voyage with other Lues. The tayoeee ahug hu sound flag off Lue’s long travel followed by lighting of firecrackers into the virgin sky.
While Haaps are known for making artistic Hoentoes,Parops do make mengey, also known as bjomja (Rice pizza). People in my village normally use dried leaves of turnip,yak butter, fresh cheese, steamed cabbage ,walnut and many more. My grandmother and other elderly people say that we must eat to our best. Our weights would be assessed on this eve by spirits.
The first eve day is usually set off by many. Often people initiate their day by washing clothes while others take pleasure in river rock stone bath that provides exotic therapy and soak away stresses of life. The following days would begin by archery tournaments, celebrations and a family get together with large celebration feasts .And truly, 29th day of the 10th Bhutanese month is a new year for all Parops and Haaps.
May this Lomba brings Seasons greetings, peace,prosperity and long lasting Happiness.
Happy Lomba Greetings!
Photo Courtesy:Ben Henritig,The Happiest Place