Chronicles – Holige, Holige

Wishing One and All a Happy Ugadi.

Ugadi apart from Bevu and Bella, brings up the sweet dish holige memories to me. I like the holige with Jaggery purna inside – thick and inspiring mixed with pure Ghee – Heaven for me and a nightmare for the cardiologist!

My mothers youngest sister – Geetha aunty was 7 months pregnent and had come home for delivery. This was because mother had lost their mother at very young age and my mother had taken care of her from child hood days.

I remember very clearly that night. Suddenly, she had labour pangs and Father ran and got a old Fiat. She was rushed to Saint Martha’s hospital at the dead of the night. I was told by mother to sleep tight and If I were a good boy, would get to see and play with a small baby. Where will me, a 2nd standard boy understand all these!

I woke up little late due to the midnight jaunt and was surprised to see Geetha aunty back and no baby. Discreet queries revealed that the pangs had subsided at hospital and they came back by 4 AM.

This cycle of pangs on and off repeated for 2 more times and mother could not take a chance since she was well into her 9th month now as elders were talking to each other.

My Jaya aunty came from denkanikootai which is in Tamil Nadu. She was the eldest. She saw the youngest sisters plight and running her hands into the heads of Geetha aunty with love asked “do you have any wishes – pregnent woman will not deliver unless all the wishes are satisfied”.

Finally Geetha aunty said sheepishely – “I feel like eating holige”

That was it – mother chastised her for not reveling this earlier. Since Geetha aunty was feeling shy to stay in our place and beyond that to ask for everything – had its net result. A boon to me!

So immideatly mother called our other sister padma aunty to do the holige so that Geetha aunty can do the delivery. Even today for me as a Project manager deliveries are a major concern!

The flour was mixed, beautiful moon shapes emerged out of them. Skillfully my mother and padma aunty spread it out on oil touched plantain leaves. I watched from a distance. Using the old style grinding stone, mother churned up the delicious jaggery patty which is used inside the holige.

I usually get my handfull of that beautiful thing after which I dissapper to enjoy sitting on my favourite wodden horse rocking and eating it. Hope some day I would retire from all these and get back to my child hood days.

Mohan – sounded my mother. I just peeped into kitchen having satisfied my quench and knew I wouldnt get the first holige anyways!. I asked “what?”. Mom gave me a 5 rupees note and thurst a plastic can and said. “Be a good boy and run to variety stores and ask for 1 litre Groundnut oil. Please come back quick. Buy 1 toffee in the change”.

The toffee stuff worked wonders. I started off from Dwarkha Bhavan on my imaginary Vespa scooter ( Gopal mama had a 3rd hand). Soon I parked in front of variety stores and thrust the can into the hands of the boy there. He asked “yen beku?”. I gave 5 Rupees and said, 1 toffee and 1 liter oil. Priorities are different for different people!

I put the toffee in my mouth and didnt want to crunch it away and ate slowly. I parked my imaginary Vespa and handed over the oil can to waiting mother and 2.80 change to her and went off to sit and watch all the buses on the main road while enjoying my double treat of poorna and toffee.

By noon we had polished off the cool holiges, though padma aunty kept saying they were unusually quite thick and took long to turn yellow brown on flames.

In computer parlance, we teach something called Garbage IN, garbage OUT. Around 5pm evening a small race started and people proved this concept long back!.

Everybodies stomach had some funny feeling. The rat race for the only tiolet was simply horrible. Those days the tiolets were only single for a group of people and away from living areas – no attached stuff. It was so intence that the house owner opened up their special toilet through back door and thought this is what happens when you eat off all the holiges and leave the smell for neighbours!

After lots of cursing the puliyogare and holige, finally the problem seemed to subside. Some Jeerige water was taken to help ease the problem. Geetha aunty decided to have a pang probably induced by the toilet running at the same moment!
Like fire brigade ready for action anytime, the backhouse autowallah volunteered to Saint Marthas this time. Since I too had one too many motions, was restricted to house saying there are “no more chaddie spares if you go out“.

At 8.45PM Gopal mama came on his Vespa with Padma aunty and told “Good news. Geetha aunty has delivered a baby boy. I thanked the holiges for that efficient delivery. Hope Ii can get the same holiges to my team for timely deliveries!

Early morning, Jaya aunty kept vigil at Saint marthas and mother with padma aunty came back. They still had some investigations pending. Both had continued the toilet visits at Saint marthas and doctor had given some medicine due to which it was under control now.

They took the oil can and went straight to Variety stores and asked what oil they had given. The packing boy said castor oil. It seems he was new in the shop since we allways purchased Ground nut oil in a red can and castor oil in yellow can we never bothered to tell that.

Unfortunately that day there was a new boy and just filled castor oil and sent us to do toilet duties.

Some holige it was. Even today we joke – Variety store special ugadhina?


12 Responses to Chronicles – Holige, Holige

  1. Prashanth M says:

    hilarious stuff…

    Even today for me as a Project manager deliveries are a major concern! — fulfill you teammates’ wishes first, then delivery will be a piece of cake πŸ˜‰

  2. Diya says:

    Wow πŸ™‚

  3. Vijay says:

    Mohan: I think you and your family have some “oil” issues.. first it was your poor aunt who drank sewing machine lubricant instead of medicine.. now you go and bring castor oil… this is hilarious !!!

  4. Veena says:

    About PM & Delivery I heard a saying from my good old friend when I was speaking about being a PM & staying back late etc.,

    He said this,
    Its as good as Husband being present outside the labour ward, & he can’t do much but still present at the venue. Common thing is both of them are waiting for the delivery! πŸ™‚

    Hilarious stuff on the holige puraaNa, OMG!! Next time when you visit my home I should carefully save my oil canes since you guys have a special affinity towards it.

    Fun apart – Castrol Oil & Groundnut oil du viscosity level eshtu different alva sir, may be our mothers doesn’t understand this tech term but they can certainly differentiate them..
    We use mostly the oil to make the outer layer using maida & without my MIL’s help I can never do it, it obsorbs oil like as if its a sand well….!

    Happy Ugadi, ee sala ‘yeNNe’ togobekaadre yaava ‘yeNNe’ antha keLi…

  5. Vani says:


    Do they still send you to fetch oil at home?

    At this rate your physician must be owning a BMW!

    And I am surprised Jaya Aunty even visited you after the Sewing Machine Oil Episode!

    I must meet your mother once…..wonder how many more stories she has to say! πŸ™‚

  6. neel3 says:

    You are becoming more like Wodehouse !!The narrative style is too good.

    Too hilarious.:)

  7. TSSM says:

    Did your aunt ask for holige again?

  8. mouna says:

    ‘castor oil’, what about soap-nut powder to wash it off πŸ˜‰
    did the holiges taste better with castor oil??

  9. some body says:

    ‘My Jaya aunty came from denkanikootai which is in Tamil Nadu. She was the eldest. She saw the youngest sisters plight and running her hands into the heads of Geetha aunty with love asked β€œdo you have any wishes – pregnent woman will not deliver unless all the wishes are satisfied”.’

    i bet the next time, just referring to holige was enough πŸ™‚

    good one, though i thought that all of you had holige made with cough medicine or some such.

    – s.b.

    Their only wish is to make me a project manager in any of their enemies company! So holiges didnt work either 😦

    Thanks for the exclamation πŸ™‚

    Thanks vijay. I would be happy to have some connections to Oil as in petrol to beat the inflation today but beggers cant be choosers!

    Thanks for the wishes. Manage yavaga barli? πŸ™‚

    My mother personally brings oil even today πŸ˜‰ Since I dont have much time to goof up with it. Elders are forgiving and Jaya aunty well into her 70’s is ready to forgive and bless us for any mischief. Those days we never saw any doctors, the biggest scare of a doctor was his pricking needle after fever forgot to leave anyof us beyond 7 days! Monday to Friday mom is available at home and you can meet her without appontment – but she would never confirm these because for mothers, anything to everything done by thier sibblings is quite ok!

    Glad you enjoyed it. I have never read PGW, hope to read it someday soon.Thanks.

    TSSM sir
    Welcome to this site. Since she moved to distant Yelahanka , we met a few times but she allways invited us to the other end of the world for enjoying other sweets including holige. But never to our house again not even for medicine why I wonder!. Pls visit again.

    We did not find the taste that much very different because getting to eat holige itself was a great pleasure – reserved for once a year. Soap-nut, wow! thats a superb idea unless you are a practicing doctor – in which case you lost some money on something called enima administred to patients at times! Thanks and do visit again.

    some body
    πŸ™‚ Absolutely correct. Man, cough medicine!!! I need to check that one out!

  10. praneshachar says:

    holige purana bahala masth masth
    olleya ugadi treat aitu nage habba
    your narration recalling all the incidents
    happened long back is amazing keep going
    there is no comparision to holige which is
    done as explained by you. a treat to eat with
    ghee and also with hot milk for those who like
    this. namage holige andrene kushi bbattu ashtu
    gottilla namma kadege holige holige holy-ge

  11. jjiud,
    Welcome to this site. Do visit again. thanks.

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