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The festival date is set with the solar cycle of the lunisolar Hindu calendar, as the first day of the Tamil month Chithirai.It therefore almost always falls on or about 14 April every year on the Gregorian calendar. Households clean up the house, prepare a tray with fruits, flowers and auspicious items, light up the family Puja altar and visit their local temples.People wear new clothes and youngster go to elders to pay respects and seek their blessings, then the family sits down to a vegetarian feast.The day celebrates the first day of the traditional Tamil calendar and is a public holiday in both Tamil Nadu and Sri Lanka. My edges are sharper and I have less interest in explaining to my date that there are multiple countries in South Asia and Africa where people who look like me come from. I’m letting the conversation move on and away from your non-knowing, North Indian, neocolonialism and staying present to the heart that you imbue. But the reality is that it’s become increasingly difficult for me to date white men. The same date is observed as the traditional new year by many Hindus in Assam, West Bengal, Kerala, Manipur, Tripura, Bihar, Odisha, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Rajasthan as well as by Hindus in Nepal and Bangladesh.
Sri Lankan Tamils observe the traditional new year in April with the first financial transaction known as the 'Kai-vishesham' where youngsters go to elders paying their respect, and elders giving their blessings and gifting pocket money to them.The state shares a maritime border with the nation of Sri Lanka.Tamil Nadu is the eleventh-largest state in India by area and the sixth-most populous. He set the standard for attraction for several years. “You know it’s really hurtful when you use that word,” I say. The words hung like twinkling stars in a nursery rhyme I may never get to sing to my children. “I mean I will, but I don’t know if I want to.” He looks confused.