Once upon a time, Dashain was all about the swingIt’s hard to see a traditional linge ping or a wooden Ferris wheel anymore.
Dashain is synonymous with flying kites, swinging on linge ping, getting together with your loved ones, and having a feast. It is a festival of reunion and merry-making, especially for children who wait for a whole year to put on new clothes, receive blessings (and money) from elders, and spend the holiday playing on the swings.
Dashain in Kathmandu isn’t much of a scene, as the densely-crowded city almost empties up, with more than half of the people leaving the Capital for their homes across Nepal to celebrate with their families. This is when the villages, which remain mostly empty throughout the year, come back to life with the arrival of people from the bigger cities.
Though much of the older ways of celebration—it’s hard to see a traditional linge ping or a wooden Ferris wheel anymore—has vanished, the charm of Dashain is still better experienced in the remote villages. The following photos, captured by US Peace Corps volunteers in the 1960s, show Nepalis enjoying the traditional linge and rote ping at a different period in the country’s history.