First, I have to correct something of my previous reports. As I know now, the ceremony of the temple Katine Pinkanme and the full moon are two different things. The day of the full moon is similar to a holiday. So the people don´t go to work but visit the temple and spend time with their family.
Katine Pinkanme is a ceremony of the temple, which is celebrated in every temple once a year. Because last month the ceremony and the full moon happened at the same day unfortunately misunderstood this. I am not very well versed but I am constantly learning during my stay.
Katine pinkanme at the temple of Nawimana. Like the other days, I was taken to the temple on Friday morning. The others already told me that we would stay there all night. We spent the day decorating the temple and the large hall. I also helped the secretaries packing gifts, as you can see in this picture.
(Govindi always tries to leave if the camera is coming ;))
Because the guys had to go back to the city to get some things, so I had the opportunity to go to my place again and freshen up. This time we drove a slightly different route. In the meantime, I thought we would be lost in the jungle. Through to a construction site on our usual way home we were forced to take another route. I interim thought we got lost in the jungle.
It was already dark when we returned to the temple. On the way, I saw the village Nawimana for the very first time. So far I just had seen the temple. Even though I´ve seen the temple numerous times it was very impressive to see it full decorated with lights and lanterns.
The ceremony started with the laying down of the flowers objects to the shrine next to the temple. It was followed by a half hour of prayers. For this the people sat around the temple until it started to rain and they moved closer to the shrine to keep them from getting wet.
Afterwards everyone joined in the big hall, including two future monks with there now shaved heads
While the monks and other people stayed in the big hall I was taken to the office by my friends.
At the office, I received another Sinhala lesson by the boys and girls. By now I know the numbers up to 100 except of 61-69 and 71-79 and some sentences like “my name is”, “I come from” … I just can´t hear the difference between the 60s and 70s series. My hosts family’s daughter couldn´t solve this problem even though she tried repeatedly. By now I already call her “Nangi” what means little sister.
The people now started the procession. It was led by a statue of Budda on a small transporter, decorated with lights and went through the village. With the boys I was walking with the procession for some time.
It was already 1:00 when we came back the centre. We wanted to go to the “Waiting Room”, where I normally spend my day, but unfortunately the door was locked. The key was in the office of the centre but Govindi und Tasheema, who were supposed to be there, were untraceable. We spent the next hour waiting, until Tasneema’s mother started hammering against the door until it opened and two very sleepy boys appeared. Now we were able to join them and tried to get some sleep as far as it was possible on the chairs.
The highlight of the night followed happened around 5:00. The transporter with the statue returned to the temple and now the two small boys would become monks.
They had already spent the two previous weeks at the temple to get prepared for their new mission. After a certain ritual, they received the usual orange monk´s robe. Afterwards everyone received the white ribbons for protection. (Meanwhile I almost have a collection).
By now the sun was already rising to I got a lift back to my place. Luckily there were no classes on Saturday, so like everyone else I decided to sleep in.
Also at Sunday and Monday (full moon) I was at my place.
To my delight we got visitors on Wednesday. My neighbours, the family Preening, were spending their vacation in Sri Lanka and after their circular tour around the country, they were now near Matara and decided to pay me a visit at the temple. Unfortunately, their son had to stay in the hotel because he was sick.
Until next time