Hello, hello have you seen the moon? I am starving” “Someone told me it is behind the Indian Oil building” “Aargh, do they have tom have highrise buildings on Karwa Chauth day, making it difficult for us to spot the moon” (Messages exchanged between two ladies of the WhatsApp group if our colony on the occasin of Karwa Chauth last year) What an inconsiderate , insensitive world! No concern for the dear ladies on a daylong fast for their husbands; long life. The highrises should have been moved away for the day keeping their religious sentiments in view and put back in their places after the fast when the ladies gorge themselves with food after spotting the moon theough a sieve and their DHs after that. Highrises are really making life difficult for the fasting ladies as the moon has ample space to play hide and seek with them. Without giving a damn for the starving ladies.And Indian Oil. Besides producing product whose prices keep rising at the drop of a hat has a added petrol, diesel and kerosene to fire by giving the moon room for hiding. Well, DW does not observe the fast and thank God for that because the Karwa Chauth's latest trend is husbands are supposed to fast in solidarity with the DWs. I can have mice running around in my stomach for sometime but I can't afford to have cats and dogs fighting there. For the past there year I have been living in an area far from crowded markets which suffer the invasion of mehandi applying ladies who ask for the moon from hapless housewives in an attempt to grt rich in just one day. The hapless ladies seeking to prolong their husbands life whether the DHs want it or not , have no option but to cough up, for . looking at the moon through a sieve (yeah no direct locking eyes with the moon) without holding it ( the sieve not the moon) in hennaed hands is not the done thing. So the ladies ' wallets look as if they have gione on a crash diets. Wonderful thing about Indian fasts is they are actualy feasts. Karwa Chauth actually means skip the lunch and evening tea. It means eating as if there's no tomorrow before sunrise and then you won't feel rumbles in your stomach until dinner. Give a dekko to the moon (Unless it is hiding behind Indian Oil or some other highririse. In that case wait cursing skuyscrapers under your breath or tweet that they are hurting your religious sentiments.) Once you manage to spot the moon just rush into the dining room and just wolf down the goodies. Nowadays not just the henna ladies but even greeting crd makers try to earn a quick buck out of Karwa Chauth with HAPPY HUSBANDS DAY cards, Happy and husbands? Not if they are shanghaied into going on a solidarity fast. TV channels contribute their mite too with Karwa Chauth horror shows. One such episode ran like this " of the two DILs in a family one observes the "fast" andd the other makes fun of it. On a fine Karwa Chauth day the onewho observes the fast sees the Grim Reaper (Scythe and all. Why the heck didn't they have Yama astride his buffalo?) going behind her BIL (Hubby dearest of the lady who mae fun of the fast. I suppose the fasting lady forgot her humongous pre-sunrise breakfast. When you are strving you see things). By virtue of the power of her fast she manages to save her BIL too and converts his wife into a believer. And poor Mr.G.Reaper, lets out a disappointed groan not unlike the sound coming from the stomach of husbands on a solidarity fast and disappears. Another trend is clubs hold (at least mine does) Karwa Chauth Queen contests where they ask silly questions like “What does sola singar mean?”. Sola for Hindi challenged is sixteen. It actually means 16 steps of decking up for the ladies to look like Dracula’s consorts on the “auspicious” occasion. But do these rituals prolong men’s life? According to a UN study , Japanese men have the longest life span followed by Switzerland. As far as I know, they don’t fast on Karwa Chauth there. We are in number 146 when it comes to life expectancy. Looks like our ladies aren’t trying hard enough. When I hurled the UN figures at a staunch Karwa Chauth devotee she said :” Oh thank God, but for Karwa Chauth we would be at number 200 or something.” Sigh. They never learn, do they?