Late September or early October marks the beginning of Dashain, the longest and most auspicious festival in Nepal. This fifteen day festival begins on the bright lunar fortnight and ends on the full moon. The celebration represents the triumph of good over evil. During these festivities, all government offices and educational institutions are closed.
It is Dashain tradition to give and receive 'tika', 'jamara' and blessings. 'Tika' is the mixture of red vermillion powder and curd that is put on the forehead as a sign of victory and good luck.
"Jamara" are maize or barley shoots that are germinated especially for the Dashain festival. Below is an example of Jamara grown by the kids, and above is the 'Tika' blessing.