Sunday, October 26, 2008

Diwali Weekend- U of T Open House

Diwali is this Tuesday. Oct 28. I was informed that I need to take some vacation days -- perhaps three. With the bulk of my annual vacation still intact, that was not a problem and Don (my boss) has been advised that I would be away ( not that it makes any diff). While in India the smells and the slight change in temperatures would be indicative of the arrival of the festive season, here in Canada the beautiful fall colors are natural Diwali usherers. The pic below is of just outside our home. While it shows the fall colors to some extent but its more an indication of how quickly the winter is creeping in on us. The trees have started to go bare ( see the fallen leaves on the lawn)

While Diwali is around the corner we also had a Univ Open house for U ofT. Anita and I along with Aayush went down to the St George's campus embedded in the down town core. We visited the Engg faculty and the Rotmans school of commerce for business studies. Interestingly like Waterloo which has a Co-op program ( work 6 months and study six months) U of T offers a PEY ( Professional experience year) for 12-16 months after the 4th year. The pros and cons were explained to us and like all good parents we took it all in unsure how we were to effectively utilize the info. The wealth of info gathered has been added to the spreadsheet that will be utilized to finally select the course for Aayush

On Sunday afternoon we gathered together for a Diwali party and had the usual fun and games, besides the delicious Indian food. Anita and Mala were co-organizers (with Mala doing most of the spade work and ofcourse Mini without whom we would not have had the room) and they quickly got the party off to a good start by Beny initiating the introductory game. Quite a few folks at the party were new to each other(mala's Doha connection) and the game helped in getting the crowd talking. There was an elderly couple who regaled us on how they got married and sang a few songs before they caught a flight to NJ.
One surprising aspect of party's in Canada is how a party moves into an empty room at a particular time, sets up the furniture, the food moves in, decorations are done , the guests move in , the music starts- mikes appear, games are organized, food is served and consumed. At the time the room needs to be vacated, everyone pitches in to wind up and the room is left bare and tidied up the way it was when we entered. Compare this to an event in India!!!
Later we all drove to a park next door and burst some crackers. The wind and the cold was not a deterent but after 30 mins it suddenly started hailing. That prompted us to call it a day and wishing each other a happy diwali we all rushed back to the warmth of our cars. Though our party got over I realized that the actual Diwali function is still to come up on Tuesday. We expect Antrix back for a few hrs on Diwali day for the puja. It will be good to be all together again albiet for a few hours.

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