Long long back, the sister and I were very fond of learning new Muggu/Kolam/Rangoli everyday and we would dutifully clean the entire staircase, sprinkle water and fill our patterns with the pure white muggu podi/ kolam maavu. Come festivals, our entrance would have the biggest colorful kolam, which we would painstakingly make along with our neighbors.
Amma is an expert with muggulu. Growing up, she had an entire veranda as her old canvas to practice. She tells us her favorite task was to clean the veranda with fresh cow dung, and then wait patiently for the additional water to dry and then start decorating it with beautiful muggulu. She draws really good parrots, peacocks, swans and flowers. More than that, she is an expert with Melika Muggu/ Siggu Kolam where you start drawing a line at one dot and go all the way across all the dots to finish it at the starting point again. Just like the many other things about her, I understood and appreciated the value of her talent only later in life – that is when I starting trying them too. It needs much attention and proper concentration. While the muggu looks simpler to look at, its not so simple trying it. I always thought why have a muggu if one cant color it, but that’s the beauty of the melika muggu. And amma draws such a thin line that it looks printed, not drawn.
I missed my share of muggulu for a good deal of years, but right from the time we moved to this new place I have been able to relive some good times. Every morning, I sweep and mop the entrance and draw a muggu that comes to my mind at that instant. For those 5-10minutes, its total bliss. At times, I take a minute or two to look at what I have created. Most peaceful times I say. A simple act as this makes the house, our home. S gets all excited about it and either stands next to me while I make it or peeps at it after I have done. His smile tells me how he feels. The maid takes a minute to look at my muggu everyday and tells she is not good at such stuff with a sigh and we both laugh.
Taking it a step forward, I had been practicing all those muggulu that I know and can make use of in the coming days. Its so therapeutic to be going on and on with the lines and patterns. Most of them are very simple, I know I have a long way to go and yet the joy of attempting them – is priceless. Sharing some of my work from the past few days here –
I want to have this as my Muggula Pusthakam* – just like the one my parents had – hand made and lovely. May be one day, my kids will find it just like we did and fall in love with it 🙂
*Muggula Pusthakam – Rangoli book.