Dashain & Identical dress

Sunita Giri 10:50 PM |

It was around 2000, we had gone to visit Babar Mahal revisited. We were about seven - eight group of girls in this tour. All of us used to attend French language in the morning and on weekends we used to gather to visit some places or go to restaurants always. So today, we were at Babar Mahal revisited, strolling around and not buying anything.

There at the art gallery, a painting exhibition was going on so we entered there just to kill the time, I guess. Damu’s eye caught a painting, in which two girls [ probably sisters ]  were wearing flip flops, both of their feet were joined and were slightly leaned on each others from the sides. More than that, what really pulled her attention was that, they were wearing identical dresses.

I was slightly behind Damu, on the row, so she looked back towards me and her eyes fixed on mine, then she look back again at the paining. In that moment of her gesture I understood what she was trying to say. Identical dress, which the girls were wearing had so much to remind her from the past.

I don’t want to say that I fall in the group who say I like identical dress. Its not because, it is not good, but because it reminds us of our time in Bal Mandir. Its not that we all used to wear same dress all the time but during Dashain and Tihar and some other big days, it  was something, we just could not escape. All new dresses, all identical. Everyone is wearing same design, color and pattern. There is no way running out from this and who is small or big ? regardless of age we did wore those dress.

Occasions to wear such dresses came many time in a year, and we had no option but to wear identical dress. Out of many days, two is the day of big days of the two big festival of our country which is undoubtedly Dashain and Tihar and another day is particularly, when the Royals came to distribute the dress for Dashain, just days before dashain.

Mainly, the queen used to distribute those dresse but sometimes may be queen’s sister also used to do this work and at times the kings three sisters also did the work. When queen did this, sometimes even king used to accompany her and this used to give us an extra excitement, but only after we reach at our rooms. Because not everybody used to see them because when the royals came to distribute those dresses they used to come with full entourage. No, not just the and their bodyguards, photographers and security team but so many royals also used to accompany along with the main person. Besides that, the whole team of Nepal Children’s Organisation staff to take care of things, and make sure that nothing goes wrong during such big visit. Not to forget the the huge number of children in the Bal Mandir and the team to take care of them, so they don't do anything wrong in front of royals. When we used to go to receive the new dress for dashain, we used to wear the last years dress. As I told you, in my earlier post that I was in the team to make the dress for us. There were a group of us who used to attend the morning school and then after school we used to run machines  to make all dress that needed in day time.

On the big day, which is the 10th day of dashain [vijaya Dashami] everybody used to wear  new dress and now I would like to leave up to your imagination how it used to look like a big yard full of children wearing same color, and pattern dress and roaming around. Boys dress used to be different than the girls. Then again, girls only mean about ninety wearing a same color dress, is enough to make anyone go dizzy and other about ninety boys wearing the same color dress. At this time, I rather close my eyes, but then it still spins my head if I remember the color choise of the staff body to select one for us.

It used to be Oh ! My God sight !

Most of the people, especially girls grew up feeling extremely uncomfortable and uneasy with the sight of identical dress. There are people, who hate the idea of shcool uniform or others but I doubt they have a slightest idea, how it feels to be in a group, when you are teen agers and have no option but to wear identical dresses.

You know what, those who were in a position to purchase those identical clothes, how come they did not even think of making different color dress for different room and age group or class of girls. Now I understand, why people hate jail dress.

Today, when I look back, I still don’t understand the need to make one color, one pattern and on top of that one design dress for all. How boring, who ever thought we all to wear one color dress. When we went outside during dashain to see movie or roam around, people could easily guess; we are from Bal Mandir, and they did not even have to be Sherlock Holmes to guess that.

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