Diwali celebration at my college

By Ayumi Hirata, Langara College, featured writer for the Study in BC blog. Read more about Ayumi here.

The Diwali celebration was held at my college! Actually, this year Diwali starts on October 18, but we celebrated it a little earlier. Diwali is known as the festival of light which is celebrated in some countries, especially in India. Based on “Ramayana”, the ancient Indian story, people celebrate “the victory of good over evil.” I joined the festival as a volunteer and helped set up. I decorated with paper lanterns and prepared for an arrangement of some Indian food on plates as my college provided Indian food, drink, and desserts such as samosa, mithai, and chai tea for free. On this event, I ate samosa for the first time. It was a bit spicy, but it tasted good. People enjoyed henna tattoos as well. My friend was wearing beautiful Indian traditional clothes.

In addition to Diwali, events of many countries including Lunar New Year and Halloween are celebrated at my college. This is a good opportunity for me to learn the culture of my friends from different countries through my own experiences. In British Columbia, people can experience various cultures in their immediate vicinity such as at school where people with different cultural backgrounds study together. In fact, I had not known what Diwali was when I was in Japan. It was not until I came to Vancouver, British Columbia to study that I celebrated Diwali for the first time. Moreover, by communicating and making friends with people from different countries, I can deepen my knowledge of cultures which otherwise I never would have known about. It also increases the number of countries I want to visit in the future. I hope I can experience more cultures and let people learn about Japanese culture as well during my stay in Vancouver.

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