Thursday, April 12, 2012
Redda – the ultimate casual outer wear around the home and about town!
As we move from a rural based society to urban, we appear to lose some of the gloss of the traditions, foods, dresses and games associated with the New Year. I would like to concentrate on commenting on those who actually make the delectable preparations we imbibe in so greedily at New Year, and wait eagerly to eat some fresh preparations of Mun Kavun or Halape or a host of other foods.
Before I get into that, I want to mention an incident yesterday, just before we left our work place to family or our homes in different parts of the country. We were all given material from our boss on account of the New Year, which I think is a wonderful gesture. I was given a trouser length from which to have a pair of trousers tailored, and one of the girls in the office was given some material, and I innocently asked her, “did you receive a cheettha length?” A cheettha length is enough material for a woman to make a sarong like wraparound traditional dress. No she said in a stern face, as if I insulted her, she said she had a gown length!!!
The implication was that she was slighted that I would have thought she would wear a wraparound cloth, and instead must realize that she would only make a gown, a western style skirt with it!!! So for a 22yr girl in Sri Lanka, it appears that it is an insult to even think they would wear a cloth at ANY time, even at home.
What may I ask have we become? I am lost for an explanation. Yes I did wear a sarong to office during the first three months of my recovery from my second operation after the bone graft was taken from my hip, to fuse with the femur on my thigh, as it was not healing on its own. I was never ashamed of wearing the sarong to work, and but for the convenience of trousers as a practical measure, think nothing of wearing a sarong to work!
Am I showing my age? Making such a statement, that young people today will not even dream of wearing a sarong. I know chauffeurs wearing sarongs today are hard to find, possibly only those over 55 may occasionally be the liveried type who wear a white sarong in their duty. It is now considered out of character so to do!
I digressed from my intended post, which I think I will defer till tomorrow and leave you the reader to ponder, comment or in any other way express your opinion on this matter of dress sense and dress as a form of a pecking order in society or even dress as a personal statement of your conformity, or non-conformity.
I conclude by lamenting that it is ONLY the avurudhu kumari who will wear the wraparound today, and even the rabana players now wear dress!!!! YES!!!!!!!