Kolkata, February 14, 2012 (Washington Bangla Radio/ Penning Creations): February has always been a month of romance. Mid-February marks the beginning of spring. The different colors on the canvas of nature, the lovely breeze and song of the love lorn Cuckoo compels you to fall in love.
Further spicing the charms of Spring is Valentine’s Day celebrated on the 14th of this month. This was the day when St. Valentine gave his life and glorified the virtue of love. It is said that in the Roman Empire once marriage had been banned for young men. It was St. Valentine who stood against the law and got young lovers secretly married in the church. On being caught he was sentenced to death. While in prison, he fell in love with the jailor’s daughter. He sent her a letter, which ended with the words “from your valentine”, before he became the martyr of love on 14th of February. The whole world pays tribute to him on this day by celebrating love. By showing your love to the one you love, the ode is paid to St. Valentine.
In Kolkata, this day is celebrated with huge pomp and grandeur. The shopping malls, the coffee shops, the restaurants are all decorated in the colors of love for this day. Red, white and pink balloons find their highest demands on this day and Red Roses sell at the price of diamonds. On 14th wherever you go you are bound to find cute young couples. Hand in hand, they seem lost in each other, absolutely unaware of the rest of the world.
All the lovers want to give away the world to their love. They bestow their loved ones with different kind of gifts on this day. The jewelry shops have now days started playing cupid in this game as all over Kolkata you get to see advertisements shouting out great “Flat Discounts” and displaying cute heart shaped gold and diamond pendants and earrings… (Sure to win the Lady Love’s fancy)
The gift and the card shops were always there with their attractive display of cute gifts and cards and Valentine’s Day along with the lovers, is their special day too. The cards are so designed that you will definitely find one which says your unspoken words.
Kolkata, being an absolutely romantic city has love all over the air on this day. The restaurants, bars and coffee shops have special menu just for this day. The pubs and the party joints organize special programs for the couples.
For couples who don’t like crowd there are lots of places in the city which give them the solitude. Some of the usual “hideouts” like Rabindra Sarobar and the grounds of Victoria Memorial seem to exude special charm for Valentine’s Day as lovers with roses and cute little gifts in hands are seen all over. Another option preferred by most is that of lazying around on a boat while enjoying the cool breeze from the waters of Bengal. Boat rides from Princep Ghat and Nol Bon are a special attraction here.
The pink hue on her cheeks or the twinkle in his eyes gives you more satisfaction than a fat pay check can ever give. This one day gives you full liberty to indulge into all kinds of childish romanticism. You can actually get mushy while expressing your love and believe it or not your lover will be touched by that. If you still think why celebrating one particular day for a feeling which is going to stay on with you for life, then try to think when was the last time you looked into each other’s eyes to say I Love You.
If on this day you are far away from the one you love, then you are bound to feel lonely. But you can find respite by just standing and watching the festivities all around you. Popular malls of the city like South City, Mani Square, City Center and Forum are sure to be decked up from head to toe giving the lovers a feeling of the “Gardens of Eden”. Various attractive door prizes and surprise gifts are sure to cheer the lonely shoppers and “V Day” wanderers too…
Adding to the V Day festivities is the announcement of West Bengal’s brand ambassador. Smt. Mamata Banerjee on the eve of Valentine’s Day formally announced that Shah Rukh Khan will now be the face of Bengal, its brand ambassador. There could be no better gift that this for the young hearts of Bengal. Now the King of Hearts will actually speak to the world on their behalf and pave the way to a glorious future.
To summarize “Love in Bengal” it can be rightly said “To love deeply in one direction makes us more loving in all others” and this is what the spirit of Bengal is all about.