Friday, September 19, 2008


I am sure you must have at least once in your life thrown eggs , tomatoes, coins etc in a show to hoot the performer or might have enjoyed others doing the same or had watched people smashing cakes on each others face in a party but if not than you should definitely visit Bunyol in Spain & join the natives in La Tomatina .

La Tomatina is an event in which people hit each other with ripe tomatoes , it is celebrated on the last Wednesday of August every year at Bunyol since 1945.La Tomatina is a part of the 7 day feast which is carried out in Bunyol & the tomato fight is held on the 7th day of the feast from 11 am to 1.00 pm. The La Tomatina is world famous event & thousands of tourist attain the event thereby doubling the enjoyment of the natives of Bunyol.

Before the tomato fight begin a ham is placed upon a a large, greased pole & the tomato fight can begin only when someone is able to climb to the top and bring it down. People struggle against each other, climbing atop one another, in order to be the one to pull down the ham. With this victory, a canon is fired in the air & the tomato-throwing begins.Around 1.00 pm a cannon is again fired to stop the throwing of tomatoes.

The enthusiasts of the events have to obey some rules such as they have to squash the tomato before throwing on others , cannot use bottle or glass item to hit others , the participants should wear gloves & goggles etc.After the event is over the participants head towards Bunyol river to clean themselves & the streets are also cleaned .

So if you are a tomato lover & haven’t visited Spain yet than plan a trip to Bunyol in August & join the world famous LaTomatina…….a battle fought with tones of tomatoes.

Monday, September 1, 2008


Jews celebrate a festival named PASSOVER. It is a festival of freedom of the Hebrew people from Egyptian bondage that took place approximately 3,300 years ago, according to the first 15 chapters of the biblical Book of Exodus.The story behind naming the festival as Passover is as follows.

The great grandson of Abraham -Joseph & the Hebrew people moved to Egypt & started dwelling there as the Pharaoh was in favor of Joseph , however as the time passed & with the arrival of new Pharaoh , the Hebrews were enslaved & were forced to work in the fields etc.

The plight of Hebrews in Egypt further deteriorated when the Pharaoh passed the rule that all the male infants born to Hebrew women will be put to death.The Pharaoh started this brutal practice because the population of Hebrews had increased in Egypt & the Pharaoh was feeling insecurity.

A Hebrew woman delivered a baby boy & she hid the baby till she could from the soldiers of the Pharaoh . One day she kept the baby in a basket & placed it in the Nile river in order to spare the baby's life. However the baby was found and pulled from the water by none other than the daughter of Pharaoh. She called him "Moses" meaning "pulled from the water".

Pharaoh's daughter adopted Moses & raised him as her own. His true mother became his nurse. Only as an adult did Moses discover his Hebrew roots. In an effort to protect the Hebrew slaves, with whom he now identified, Moses killed an Egyptian taskmaster. Afraid of the reaction of the Pharaoh, Moses fled Egypt to a distant land.

Moses got married & settled in a foreign land .One day Moses saw a burning bush, from which he heard the voice of God. God ordered Moses to return to Egypt and free Hebrews from Slavery.Moses returned to Egypt & demanded the emancipation of the Hebrews, but Pharaoh refused. God then intervened, demonstrating His great power by causing ten plagues to fall upon Egypt.The water of the Nile turned to blood and then frogs, lice, cattle diseases, pestilence, boils, hail, locusts and darkness descended upon the Egyptians.

The final plague was the death of all first born Egyptians. The Hebrews were instructed to mark their door posts with lamb's blood so that the angel of death would "pass over" the homes of the Hebrews and strike only the Egyptians .That's why the Jewish festival of freedom is known as Passover.

After witnessing the death of many Egyptians the Pharaoh released the Hebrew slaves. The Hebrews, in a hurry to leave Egypt, prepared dough for bread, but did not have time to let it rise. Therefore they ate unleavened bread, which is known today as matza.

After the Hebrews left Egypt, the Pharaoh suddenly regretted his decision and sent his army to capture them and bring them back to Egypt. The Egyptians chased the Hebrews to a sea. When they reached the sea, God created a great wind which parted the waters, allowing the Hebrews to cross. As the Egyptian army chased them, God closed the waters & the Egyptians were drowned.

This mythological story reveals about Moses & Hebrew people , also it suggest the importance of the festival Passover which marks the freedom of Slavery of Hebrews in Egypt.

Friday, August 24, 2007


Jewelery ,ornaments are favorite possessions of all women & for many women ornaments are their first love as they enhance their beauty & pride but Karen girls hate their neck ornaments. The Karens, pronounced (Ka-rans), are tribal people found in Burma & Thailand . The Karens are farmers by profession .The religion of majority of Karen is Animism and Buddhism although there is a sizable population of Christians among the Karens.

Among Karens there is a tradition in which women wear several brass rings around their necks which may weigh up to 5 Kgs .A visitor may find the brass rings very attractive but imagine the plight of the woman who is wearing the rings right from the age of 5 or 6 .The woman wears the rings through out her life .The number of rings varies , elderly women wear up to 25-30 rings. The aim behind wearing the brass rings is to stretch the neck so that Karen women have ' LONG NECKS ' which is considered as important aspect of Karen women's beauty .However the brass rings do not stretch the neck but squash the vertebrae & collar bones.

That's why today's Karen girls hate wearing brass rings around their necks which are their ornaments.

Sunday, August 19, 2007


Every year International Labor Day is celebrated all over world on 1st May.In China workers get leave for 7 days around the first week of May to celebrate the International Labor Day .This 7 day leave is called May Day Holiday in China. May Day Holiday is considered as one of the three Golden weeks of China .The other two golden weeks are October National Day & the Spring Festival which is January or February. During these long holidays the Chinese travel along with their families as a result there is lot of hustle & bustle in China & the tourist find very difficult to get accommodation & other facilities.

Jockeys riding on Ostriches during a novelty race for a large crowd , organized on the May day Holiday

A girl sits next to Chimpy as she poses for a photo at the end of an animal show in Shanghai during May Day Holiday in China.

The Chinese enjoy the vacation by organizing animal shows ,competitions,races etc.The vacation is a good source of recreation & when the workers are back to their daily schedule they are full of vigor & vitality However for foreigners it is not advisable to visit China during the above mentioned Golden Weeks.

Saturday, August 11, 2007


According to Chinese calender every year is a specific animal year & there are 12 animals .Therefore after every 11 years the specific animal becomes the animal of the year . 2007 is considered PIG Year which started from 18th February.Pig year is considered very auspicious as it is believed that children born in Pig Year are bestowed with good fortune & health as a result there is always a Baby Boom in Pig year.


To celebrate 2007 as Pig Year the Chinese Postal service released a special edition of Sweet & Sour Pork flavored Stamps.Although the concept of flavored stamps is new for most of us it is an imitation of Eucalyptus smelling stamps which were released by the Royal mail of Britain in 2001. The interesting fact about the Chinese Sweet & Sour Pork flavored stamp is that when someone scratches the front of the stamp it smells of Pork & when somebody licks the glue it tastes of common Chinese Pork dish.

With the growing technology we might hear soon similar innovations in India too & in fact it will be good for our Indian Postal service which has been hampered due to Courier services.

Thursday, August 9, 2007



The Chinese custom of binding feet of girls is some 1000 years old.According to a Chinese legend this custom developed after TANG DYNASTY EMPEROR who was in love with a concubine .The concubine used to wrap her tiny feet in silk when she danced. In China the girls feet were bound so tightly & early in life that they were unable to dance & had difficulty in walking .By the time the girl is 3 years old her toes were first broken & her feet were bound tightly with cloth strips to prevent the feet to grow larger than 10 Cms due to this extremely painful practice the soles of feet bend in extreme concavity.The feet formed due to this custom is known as Lotus Feet.
Foot binding ceased in 20th century due to increasing western influence , however in remote mountainous region of China women still had their feet bound .Today in China very few elderly women have Lotus foot.

Wednesday, August 8, 2007


No sooner we hear the word ' SUMO ' all of us start giggling as we imagine a very fat but cute Japanese man with just a small piece of cloth around his waist. Also sometimes most of us call an obese individual Sumo in fun.However we are absolutely incorrect if we use the word SUMO for a fat man not because it is bad manners to tease someone but because the word SUMO means a Japanese form of wrestling . In other words Sumo is not a person it is a from of wrestling.

The minimum 136 kgs fat man who participate in Sumo is known as RIKISHI. Thus RIKISHI is a Sumo Wrestler.A Rikishi is called YOKOZUNA when he becomes a grand champion of Sumo .In Sumo a wrestler's weight, size & strength are more important than the speed & suddenness of attack by the wrestler. The Sumo wrestling ring is known as DHOYO which is a 15 feet circle.A Sumo wrestler looses if he is forced out of the wrestling ring or any part of the Sumo wrestler except his soles of his feet touches the ground.YOBIDASHI is the announcer in Sumo ,he calls the Sumo wrestlers into the ring prior to the actual wrestling.The referee in the Sumo is known as GYOJI .Gyoji usually enters the Sumo world as a teenager & remain as a employee of Sumo Association until he retires at the age of 65. The colored belt worn by the Sumo wrestler is known as MAWASHI .Upper ranked professional wrestlers wear KESHO-MAWASHI during the wrestling ring entry ceremony.Kesho-Mawashi is a long embroidered cloth .

Sumo wrestler's life expectancy is about 55, 20 years short of the average for Japanese men in general. Prospective sumo wrestlers are raised from the time they are 14 years old .They are fed on a special high-protein soup that contains meat or fish, tofu, vegetables, noodles, rice & sugar. A midday snack might be 100 sushi rolls. Some have prided themselves on being prodigious beer drinkers. What they eat isn't too different from a traditional Japanese diet. They just eat huge quantities but the true secret behind every 400-pound sumo wrestler is Napping. Napping is a critical part of the training regimen. To gain weight, they eat late in the day and sleep as much as possible after each meal.

Sumo wrestlers have a lot of subcutaneous fat but not arterial or deep-body fat, which is the most dangerous kind but if they don't lose weight when they retire (about the age of 30, usually), fat distribution changes and they can develop heart problems, diabetes, and all the ailments that plague obese people .

This is a brief insight of Sumo World by Moksha