Holi Hai festival is one of my favourite events in Busan. For the past 3 years I’ve joined friends and strangers in throwing paint at one another. Most of us spend our weekdays being all professional and sticking to the social norms, so when we’re allowed to go a bit crazy and throw paint everywhere we go all out. Holi was actually a few days before the festival in Busan this year, but its always held on a Sunday here, so it was a bit of a belated celebration.
The day starts with tucking into some hefty sized samosas (quite possibly the only reason I was able to drag myself out of bed for the event this year). You then spend 3 hours throwing powdered paint over everyone and everything. They do three count downs so you know when to do your main bit of paint chucking.
There’s music and conga lines in full swing, and the three hours goes really quickly. It’s inevitable that you almost get blinded by one or more of your friends, who decide to throw it in your face to add the the multicoloured mess already on you. Even though its held in March/April, the weather in Busan is starting to warm up, so the sea turns into one big paint removing bath.
The first year I went to Holi was definitely my favourite of the three. There was such a big group of us, and the day time makgeoli drinking definitely added to it. We ran around for hours with Gemma’s selfie-stick go pro. We then drunkenly bombarded an Indian buffet and took over the bus back to Gimhae, getting paint everywhere, and no doubt annoying the poor locals who were unfortunate enough to be catching the same bus as the rowdy waygookins (foreigners).
Everyones inner child loves to get a bit messy and crazy, so the atmosphere is pretty special at Holi. Going to the real thing, in India or Nepal, is now something definitely added to my bucket list. Even though the event in Busan seems to be growing every year, I can imagine that it’s on a smidgen of what the celebration is there.