Madhogarh (Rajasthan): The crops are all set for the harvest and the sun is just right to soak oneself in.
Makar Sankranti is the celebration of the sun's resurgence after lying low throughout the winter months. It still brings the ancient forts of Rajasthan back to life.
The people of the desert never have enough of their sun. With all its harshness in the summer months, come Makar Sankranti and the sun gets a warm welcome all over again.
As the kitchens spreads out to the courtyards, women knead sesame and jaggery to make laddus (sweet in the form of balls), believed to be really good for health in winters.
While women experiment with grandma's recipes, the men hop on to the terraces to ‘pull strings’, and little kite battles are the order of the day.
“What I love most is flying kites in the company of my friends and the old villagers,” says a resident of Madhogarh, Shiv Pratap Singh.
As the courtyard reverberates with the sun's songs, everyone puts their dancing shoes on. And the women have a reason for not missing the kites.
“We wear clothes with patterns of kites on them and they are dyed like that in kite patterns,” says another resident of Madhogarh, Tarkeshwari.
After loads of kite flying, through the spirit of bonhomie that unfolds on Makar Sankranti from day-break to sundown, everyone's still vying for more.
But with the world turning bright and beautiful, the good life has just begun and it is time to soak in the sun.