Ganpati Bappa Morya
“Ganpati Bappa….Morya!” Whenever I hear this chant, I can’t help but smile ! Of course, there’s nothing new or unusual about this cry by Ganesh devotees, especially during Ganesh Chaturthi, but this chant holds many fond memories for me and takes me back to last year’s Ganpati celebrations.
My family and I had come down to Mumbai, from Pune, a week before Ganesh Chaturthi to attend my cousin’s 18th birthday celebrations, as she was celebrating in a big way having become an adult. We had a great fun-filled week and enjoyed the Mumbai masti and flavor thoroughly. I had taken leave from work for 2 weeks and so was tension-free. As we are devout believers of Lord Ganesh, we have been bringing him home for the last few years. So this year too, we had decided to get Ganesha home, but thought would do it differently since we were in Mumbai and decided to bring him home from there.
Since my mum, dad, brother, myself and 2 teenager nephews from Pune were travelling together, we had gone down to Mumbai in a luxury bus as the car would not suffice. But the plan for return was to fetch Lord Ganesh in my cousin’s car from Mumbai and another car borrowed from a very close friend, as we would easily be about 9 family members travelling back to Pune for the Ganesh Chaturthi celebrations. But as luck would have it, we learnt a day earlier that the friend and his car (company car) would be unavailable on that day as he had to take off on an urgent work assignment. For a while, we considered other options of hiring another car, booking an inter-city cab etc. but then my brother suggested that we do things differently again and ditch the car or taxi for a luxury bus as we were so many of us. It would be fun, different and a novel way of taking Ganesha home…….at least for us.
So I went to our regular site, www.abhibus.com and after a bit of browsing around, managed to book bus tickets for ourselves online. Boy…..was I glad that we managed to get tickets for all of us on the same bus and that too, in a nice luxury coach. I chose the departure time of 9am, so that we had enough time to collect our idol and make it to the bus pick-up point well in time.
On the day, all of us set off to pick up our Ganesha early in the morning with our bag and baggages and then proceeded to the bus pick-up point. It was my brother who chose to carry Ganesha (with face covered till sthapana) all the way home and that was a good thing as he was all of 20, well-built and could manage the weight for the next few hours till we reached Pune. Turn by turn each of my family members chanted ‘Ganpati Bappa…Morya’ and were joined by the rest. When we entered our bus, I was a bit conscious at first about our big troupe and then the occasional chanting but to my surprise, whenever one of us called out ‘Ganpati Bappa….’, practically the whole bus answered ‘Morya’ and this continued till the end of our journey. It didn’t matter that it was a mixed crowd in the bus…….some were South-Indians, a Catholic couple and some Sikhs. All joined in and with enthusiasm. It was a nice feeling and made me realize that plenty of people still respect each other’s religion even if they may not believe in the same….there were only a few trouble-makers.
It was a happy, eventful ride and a great way to rejoice while bringing Lord Ganesha home. Strangers in the bus actually bowed down in front of the idol and waved out to us while getting off at their respective stops. This was one Ganesh Chaturthi that left really fond memories for me! And I have to admit that my over-smart brother actually had a brilliant idea for a change and have to thank Abhibus for making it so convenient for us on all fronts. The staff in the bus were very thoughtful and considerate too. Thought this was worth sharing.
Picture Credits : Google / Youtube