Kunnimani and manchadi are missing these days

Childhood memories are really pleasing and they are always associated with some sort of innocent plays and collecting simple things. It may be just a piece of marble, broken bangles or even Kunnamani and manchadi. I doubt if even a single child of modern times do collect such items. Though they look cheap, they are priceless to those kids belonging to one or two decades back.

Kunni Kuru also known as Kunni Mani

If I say about my childhood memories, both these seeds have great significance. I used to collect them both and am sure, every child really loves it. It’s really hurting to know that such precious things are really missing these days. A few days back, when I gave these seeds to my 5 year old girl, I could see innocence in her eyes. Her eyes grew broader and in surprise and happiness, she told, “Beautiful!”

Manchadi Kuru

Yes, for a kid of new generation it may be not be possible to play with such things. I used to play kallankuzhi pallankuzhi) in my childhood with these beads. Kunnimani is available in red-black combination as well as in pure white colour. It resembles a hen’s egg a lot though it’s smaller in size. Its amazing and matching colour combination, size and shape made it kid’s favourite. I am sure, though tastes of kids have changed with the passage of time still they are innocent and carry some sort of similarities of tastes with kids a half century back.

Kunnimani cluster

Manchadi kuru (lucky red seeds) is also used by astrologers for ‘preshnam vaikkal’ – astrological predictions. Once upon a time, manchadi was also used as measurement of gold. Manchadi’s weight was taken as the smallest unit of gold. It’s still used in local phrases, though measurements have been substituted with much more accurate ways.
Kunnikuru (crab’s eye) has nothing significant except its amazing colour combination that makes everyone’s favourite. Manchadi is a tree while Kunnikuru a climber. Leaves of manchadi is used for ‘irakkipooja’ of southern districts of Kerala – a temple celebration associated with procession of Bhagavathi’s idol and a velichappad and it goes from one home to another giving blessing to the devotees. While different types of flowers and leaves are used for decorating the place where pooja is conducted, manchadi leaf owns a significant place.
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A freelance writer and blogger by profession since October 2011, interested in writing over a wide range of topics. Hope you enjoy my writings. I belong to one of the beautiful places of the world, Kerala, nicknamed as 'God's own country'.

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