PEN celebrated this year’s “Holi” in the presence of its members, well-wishers and friends from Japan and Nepal on March 19, 2011. PEN has been celebrating this festival of colour and water since its founding in 2008. The main purpose behind celebrating this festival was to enhance friendship, brotherhood/sisterhood, understanding, cooperation, and trust among the participants.

This year’s Holi was as special as last year as we could involve two friends from Japan Masanobu Ebisawa and Sho Ishii. Last year, Japanese friends: Soichiro Yamanaka, Keisuke Takeyama and Yoshihito Fuwa were here to experience this great festival. Since last year, PEN has been very lucky to welcome Japanese friends in this action-packed festival. We believe, this was a kind of cultural exchange between Nepal and Japan.

PEN had a plan to celebrate Holi at Auto Ave, motor servicing centre of Board Member Dipendra Dangol. President Sujan Koirala, Vice President Shreebatsa Basnyat, Secretary Manohar Sapkota, Treasurer Bal Gopal Shrestha, Joint Secretary Guna Raj Pyakurel, Joint Treasurer Dipendra Dangol, Board Member Harihar Sapkota and Members Bijaya Thapa gathered at the servicing centre at 11.30am. We were joined by many friends and well-wishers. Some Kantipur Crew’s scouts also joined the festival. Masanobu and Sho were brought at the centre by Guna Raj Pyakurel. Once we gathered, members and friends began to put different colours in the face of each other and exchanged the greetings. We began to fire buckets of water and colour powders to each other. We were thrown colourful water by the neighbours from their roofs and windows. They mainly threw “lola” (small plastic sag filled with water specially used in this festival) on us. In return, we threw lola on them.

Including Masanobu and Sho, some PEN members and friends made a round of Kumarigal area. Again, we gathered at Auto Ave. We sang Holi song “Jo Geera Sara ra ra….”. We also danced in many Bollywood dance numbers. The faces and clothes were worth-watching because of different colours and water. We were totally wet from top to bottom. The five hours long excitements came to an end after having some cups of tea at Mitrapark Café at 4.30pm.

There were above 40 people who joined from different corners of Kathmandu. It was a thrilling, exciting and memorable event for us and above all for Japanese friends. They were quite delighted to experience this life time experience.