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Unlike most of the world, in West Bengal the year is divided into six seasons.

Tuesday, February 17th, 2004

Kolkata, India

Six Seasons

Unique to East India

Unlike most of the world where the year is divided into four distinct seasons, in West Bengal (and many other parts of eastern India and Bangladesh), the year is divided locally into six seasons.

In West Bengal and Orissa, the seasons are divided into: vasanta, or spring, from mid February to mid April; grishma, or summer, from April to June; varsha, or the rainy season, from June to August; sharad, or autumn, from August to October; hemanta, or winter, from October to December; and sishira, or the "dewy" season, from December to February.

It should be pointed out that although most Indians recognize six distinct seasons, foreigners (like me) can usually only distinguish three: the summer season (vasanta and grishma), the rainy season (varsha and sharad), and the winter season (hemanta and sishira).

Now that we are entering into vasanta (spring/summer), the days are beginning to get noticeably warmer and pleasant, with temperatures in the mid twenties (mid seventies, Fahrenheit).

I am enjoying the weather while I can; all too soon it will be April, and with April comes the beginning of summer; and with the beginning of the summer comes the clammy, oppressive heat. But I shall be back in California before then...

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Layout by imonk — February 17th, 2004.