Diwali, the festival of lights, somewhere down the lane, ended up becoming the festival of crackers. As the black clouds of pollution loom over us, it’s time to look at other alternatives for spending the day with the same excitement and charm.

Diwali is one of India’s most favourite festivals. Houses are lit up, markets are bustling with sweets and Rangoli and everyone around you is prepping up their Instagram-ready outfits. Even if you might not be ready to soak in the festivity yet, the sight of lights everywhere are definitely ‘guiding you home’; instantly lifting up your mood.

The morning after Diwali, however, is a mess. After you finally wake up at noon, the sight that beholds you is of the remnants of the burnt crackers everyone paid thousands for. Ironically, while the days prior Diwali are spent cleaning the house, all of our philosophies die a sorry death when it comes to the waste accumulated through crackers.

This Diwali, save yourself and your loved ones from the sight (and the polluted air weeks after) and spend this Diwali season cracker-free! Here are a few ways in which you could spend your day:

  1. Go creative! Make Rangolis!

This Diwali, bring out your inner artist. Think out of the box, and instead of the stencils found in the market and create your own designs. Use colours, flowers, and paints to decorate your house and impress your parents!

  1. Exchange Meaningful Gifts!

Instead of the generic box of Soan-Papdi and dry fruits, gift your loved ones something personal. Spend this Diwali exchanging gifts that last longer than that box of laddoos.  Light up your siblings’ Diwali with that handmade photo frame. Visit your relatives and leave your mark on the presents you give. Do something that leaves a mark on others and makes your heart happy!

  1. Help the underprivileged:

Instead of spending thousands of rupees on crackers, this Diwali make a difference. DO your bit to light up the lives of people around you who might not be able to do it by themselves. Diwali is the perfect season for buying or donating winter necessities and food. You can even visit an orphanage, share your joy and even get gifts for people there. Nothing in the world would bring you more happiness than the twinkle in the other person’s eyes!

  1. Take Care of Stray Animals:

What is fun for you might not be as fun for your pawed pals. The street animals suffer terribly by getting caught up in the web of smoke and noise of the festival. Hang up feeders for birds and leave food for the cats and dogs in your neighbourhood. Provide your canine and feline friends the warmth and love they deserve instead of bursting crackers! You can even visit shelters if you have them around you and spend the festival with ‘woofs’ instead of ‘booms’.

  1. Catch up with friends and family

Maybe you are a student who had to stay back in their hostel because of classes and pending assignments or maybe you’re some who’s visited their hometown after ages. What better festival to catch up with friends, old and new, than Diwali? Call up your friends, plan a get-together, and spend the day basking in the stories and laughter of your friends. Strengthen the new friendships and revive the old ones.

  1. Learn and play card games!

This is the perfect season for you to show how gifted you are in Teen Patti. Show your proficiency or learn new card games for the night to ensure a night full of chaos and laughter, and perhaps a bitter uncle or two. Moreover, who knows you might even end up winning money?  Just be careful with that confidence though; you might as easily go broke too!

This Diwali, opt for less harmful alternatives and make the festival better for your loved ones (and their pets!)


Image credits: Monsoon Kitchen

Satviki Sanjay

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