People visiting us for the Ratha Yatra Fest have some wish to travel and see the neighbourhood, simply by going on a japawalk with me. So, for those out-of-towners, I will take them through the winding residential streets of Rosedale. However, what everyone will really get to know about Toronto, on this special day, is the southern-most stretch of Yonge Street, because that is the route of Jagannatha, the universal superhero.
CBC came with cameras to interview a number of us who are the organizers. They stayed with us for the whole procession.
“It’s a 5,000 year old event involving Krishna, and His Brother and Sister, enjoying a chariot ride.”
“How many people will be attending?” asked the CBC rep.
Rukmini gave the total of about 1,000, for starters, and then explained that it builds up. It’s true. From the reference library at Yonge and Asquith, where the procession of chariots begins, that is so. By the time we reached the overpass at the tunnel near the lake, it was a good attendance, and the numbers just blossomed into the thousands.
My usual parrot friend from King City came over to rest on my shoulder. Sunil, the pet owner, brings him to witness Jagannath on His chariot. Both Krishna, in the form of Jagannath,and the Amazon parrot are vivid in colour. People who are unaware of the traditional festival are just surprised—in a good way, of course. https://www.instagram.com/p/BlJ0adugNfl/?utm_source=ig_share_sheet&igshid=rrbgxu2uenow
May the Source be with you!