My mom is busy roasting some puffed rice in the Kadhai for the evening snack and tea is broiling on the next stove. The smell of ginger and cardamom lingered in the air and in I went all gliding and locking and popping to the song playing from the earphones in my ears. I take a handful of puffed rice and I’m about to pop them into my mouth when my mom roars,
“Stop! How many times do I have to tell you? DON’T EAT DIRECTLY FROM A VESSEL!”
I frown, “Mom, for the 100th time there’s no such thing as …”
“I said NO! Put it back.”
I sigh in surrender and put the goddamn puffed rice back. Take it again,put it in a plate and THEN eat it.
Now let me explain you the logic behind this.
According to the plethora of seemingly infinite myths that India harbors, this one means that if you eat directly from a deep vessel, IT WILL RAIN HEAVILY ON YOUR WEDDING.
This is one out of a repository of incidents that I’ve explained. I don’t at all understand the concept of myths. First question, who was the person who had the sweet time to sit and make all of these. Second, how on Earth can people believe in them? These things are totally NOT backed by logic.
I was talking to an Irish girl once (don’t ask me how or when but I just was). So we talked about superstitions for a while and she told me some of the Irish Myths:
1.) A dead hand is believed to be a cure for all diseases. Many times sick people were brought to a house where a corpse was laid out, so that the hand of the dead might be laid on them.
2.) A crowing hen, a whistling girl, and a black cat are considered very unlucky. Beware of them in a house.
3.) If chased at night by a ghost or an evil spirit, try to get to a stream of running water. If you can cross it no devil or evil spirit will be able to follow. (Chased by a spirit-that’s a comforting thought.)
4.) Do not turn off a light while people are at supper. If you do there will be one less at the table before the year is out. (This is starting to creep me out).
5.) If your ears are burning, someone is gossiping about you. (Interesting)
6.) If you want to know the name of the person you are to marry, put a snail on a plate sprinkled with flour. Cover the plate and leave it overnight. In the morning the initial of the person will be on the plate, traced by the snail.
7.) Fairies live all over Ireland. The places they live are called forts, raths, or mounds. A fairy king rules each of these places. At times it is said you can hear sounds of music and merriment coming from the fairy places. (Fairies? I think I’m shifting to Ireland.)
You think these are spooky? Wait until you read some Indian ones:
1.) If a crow comes to your roof and caws, you can expect some visitors.
2.) If dogs near you are howling in the night, it is a signal of death.
3.) Never cut your nails at night. (I have never got the answer for this)
4.) There is a concept called ‘Evil Eye’ and elders in India often use things like ‘Kajal‘ to protect their new born from the evil eye. The effects of the evil eye may range from illness to death.
5.) Peepal and Banyan trees are considered to be the abode of the witches and thus should be avoided at night.
6.) Broken mirrors and broken God idols are the worst form of bad luck.
8.) You cannot buy iron/ eat meat/ cut your hair or trim your fingernails on some days of the week.
9.) If you or someone around you sneezes while you’re about to go somewhere (work, party) it is considered a very bad omen. You must wait for 5 minutes and then leave.
10.) If a black cat crosses your path, it is very unlucky.