Happy Ugadi to all...... ఉగాది శుభాకాంక్షలు.
Today has been Ugadi , It is a New year festival here in the southern parts of India. I have been born and brought up in the State of Andhra Pradesh in souther India and this festival is special to me. Ugadi means begining of new era, otherwise called simply "Vasantha Rutuvu" which means pleasent nature. This beautiful festival marks the beginning of Spring season where weather is pleasent and nature is in full bloom. To celebrate this we prepare Ugadi Pachadi (New Year Salad Mixture), Its a kind of fresh Salad made with tender mangoes (for pungent taste), fresh new tamarind (for sour taste),Neem (Azadirachta indica) flowers (for bitterness) and freshly made Jaggery for sweetness also salt for taste.
According to Hindu mythology at the beginning of a new era people eat jaggery & neem flower as a mark of happiness(sweet-jaggery) and sorrow(bitter-Neem), therefore both are taken eqaully.