Today (and tomorrow) Guyana is celebrating the Hindu Festival of Lights known as Diwali. This celebrates the triumph of good over evil, light over darkness. According to Hindu tradition it is considered to be celebrating Vishnu’s return after fighting Ravana, sometimes referred to as the Demon King.
Today is the National Holiday recognizing this Hindu holiday, so schools and other public institutions were closed.
I visited some of my new host family’s extended family where we ate 7 curry. They will be celebrating tomorrow with traditional sweet foods. Tonight floats from Mandirs all over the country will be in a parade passing the seawall in town. They will be lit up representing the light over darkness.
They place clay bowls filled with coconut oil around the outside of their homes and lite them in the dark. Fireworks, especially poppers, have been going off all day.