This season of spring is provoking me to describe the beautiful memories of Lahore festivals that I had participated in and enjoyed throughout the year or especially in spring. There were Horse and Cattle Show, Fire Work Show, National Industrial Exhibition, Music Concert, Basant, Art and culture exhibition etc. My city Lahore, took lead to introduce “Food Street” that is still a place to spend some time with loving ones for the refreshment of mind and tummy. But the atmosphere is not there anymore. Everyone has a threat of terrorism in their conscious. Even government level functions are now being arranged within the walls under top security measures. The fear leads our children to spend most of their time at home on the internet. Internet activities are not bad but these are only activating our brain, eyes, and fingers. Our body and soul is not meant to be lazy. The human body needs some positive and enjoyable activity besides routine exercise.
We still have some events like Spring Flower Show, Birds Show, recent Pakistan Super League match etc, but unfortunately, we are missing the festivity due to fear of terrorism. Actually, I was not in a mood to discuss this situation but it is now so deeply indulged in our daily life. I want to share the sense of festivity that I enjoyed a time ago. First of all, the live music and music concerts were my favorite most. I personally like to listen to it at Al-Hamra Open Theatre where I enjoyed both Sufi and Pop music. Especially, legendary Abida Parveen and Surayya Khanum are unforgettable.
It was a food for the soul to listen to them. Cinema is always a luxury, but cinema culture was also at the peak in Pakistan in 80’s and 90’s. I was keen to watch my favorite movie according to my budget and there were three categories. Anyone can come and enjoy movie or air-conditioner. I myself witnessed many people sleeping during the movie and if they were asked why the answer was “we came here to sleep 3 hours in the cool environment”. Now a day, cinemas are providing many facilities as compared to old cinemas but they are also charging higher. A common person has to think many times before planning to go to multiplexes.
Then, the second but most participating occasion for me was Industrial Exhibition. Small Industries items were my most bought items for my home. During it, I always enjoyed the rush of different people around, happy, fearless and enjoying the environment. Food stalls were also a big fascination for all of Lahoris. At that time, Fortress Stadium was not much captured with posh and expensive food chains. One could enjoy the available means. As far as Horse and Cattle were concerned, it was for promoting the dairy farming and at that time, I had less interest in it but various and colorful floats and Tattoo Show(Fire-works) were excellent to watch.
They were same to me. Once, my friend in N.C.A (National College of Arts) invited our entire group to see their art exhibition. We all friends were very excited but that was all about abstract art. Whenever we asked any painter what this is all about, the answer was the same,” it is our inner feelings”. We laughed and asked why it is inside you and not us. Well, it was fun and those boys were immature, now they must be at their best and so as we can now at least understand a bit about their art.