Ghughua Mana

घुघुआ मना, उपजे धना, बाबु  के  छेदाये  देनों  कान  दुनु  सोना ,

नव  घर  उठे  पुरान घर  खसे, नव  घर  उठेएएए –  पुरान घर  खसे.

(Ghughua mana, upaje dhana, babu ke chedaye denon kaan dunu sona,

Naw ghar uthe puran ghar khase, naw ghar utheee, puran ghar khase.)

There are certain games that are handed over from one generation to another, or even beyond, as is the case of one of my favourite childhood games that my daughter loves too. I remember having spent a very considerable part of my childhood at my grandparents’ place with my complete family: my uncles and aunts, and my cousins who made for the floating population of five by sixty one.


I used to stick with my grandmother throughout the day because she used to take me to several places with her. In the evening, she used to play with me. Ghughua Mana was one of my favourites and I used to demand for it often. I don’t have a very photographic or precise kind of a memory, yet I remember the details of at least one instance of her playing ghughua mana with her favourite grandson (the only grand child she had around for a very long part of his initial days). It was in the room with the ventilator that opens into the garden by Bhagwan Das Chacha’s house. I may be wrong but I don’t remember anyone else from my family, at any time, playing it with me.

It’s  a very simple game in which the grown ups first lie down upon their back and take the child who demands for it on their shins by bringing them together. They rock the child gently while they sing the first line: घुघुआ मना, उपजे धना, बाबु  के  छेदाये  देनों  कान  दुनु  सोना (Ghughua mana, upaje dhana, babu ke chedaye denon kaan dunu sona). As they reach the last three words, they touch or pinch the child’s ear very softly. With the second line, things change. With नव  घर  उठे (Naw ghar uthe the child has to be lifted with the shins, and with  पुरान घर  खसे (puran ghar khase) it has to be brought down. The second नव  घर  उठेएएए (naw ghar utheee), as it has a longer ending, demands longer time with the child dangling in the mid air, and then पुरान घर  खसे (puran ghar khase).

[Once more I took help of <; for the Hindi part.]

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