Do you play cards on Diwali?

Rohit Vadhwana Tuesday 10th November 2020 13:26 EST

(Expressed opinions are personal.)

Diwali festivities are round the corner. One of the key elements of celebrating Diwali is playing cards! 

People in India like to play cards on the Diwali night with the hope that Goddess Lakshmi will bestow its blessings upon them and that luck and fortune will follow their way. In some parts of India, people play cards on Janmashtami too. I have heard that some people traditionally gamble on the night of Maha Shivratri as well. Then there are people who gamble frequently celebrating each day as it comes! But it is an important part of Diwali celebration in Mumbai and Delhi also. I have certainly enjoyed it wherever I am. While playing cards, people also like to try different games. I like the simplest of games like Teen Patti (3 cards) or Rami (13 cards) and the main focus remains on transaction of money.

There are different types of people and such games often reflect on the sporting characteristics of such players. There will be a typical auntie who starts the game by saying, “I am not an expert at this game. Someone, needs to help me, otherwise, I will lose all my money.” She is usually the one discussing the rise in inflation, increasing prices of the vegetables, difficulties in running household expenses nowadays, etc. But her husband, would be least bothered either about the inflation or about her losing money in the game. He would happily focus on playing cards.

Youngsters would be more excited about the game and use all their skills and swiftness in dealing cards. As usual, they believe the old are slow and don't know anything about the modern world. They begin with an aggressive game, bet a larger amount, hoping that the aunties and uncles will be intimidated. Millennials, who are at the edges of both generations, have no intention to either offend the elders or upset youngsters. They munch on their snacks and play their natural game.

Gradually during the game, we realise that the aunties and uncles, who hold their cards very tight and close to the chest, turn out to be the skilled gamblers. They open the cards with so much pressure on the corner of each card as if the two cards are stuck to each other with glue. They are very cautious of anyone else seeing their cards.  By midnight, after playing many blind games, youngsters are about to finish their quota of money, while the oldies have accumulated all the wealth. “I don't know how to play” griping oldies are the winners and the ever-energetic youngsters prove themselves to be naively ambitious and aggressive. The only wise generation that doesn't get embarrassed either by winning or losing are the millennials.

As the night proceeds, the oldies become more and more interested in games. While youngsters have changed their biggest notes, the oldies have pocketed them by handing them loose change. They keep only a small amount of money in view of others.

And the game goes on. Money remains in the family. No one is an actual loser but the whole family has a winning spree after spending a festival night together. So, the question is: Do you play cards on Diwali? If not, try it with your family this Diwali. It is fun. But be careful. Don't bet heavy. There should be a limit per game, too. I would suggest maximum £1 per game and £50 for whole night per person.

[Disclaimer: I do not promote gambling. This is only within family and with strictest limit on money, members and also only for one day. Readers are advised to use their discretion and caution.]

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