SHILLONG GAMBLING ARCHERY SPORT


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Asia » India » Meghalaya » Shillong
November 3rd 2007
Published: November 4th 2007EDIT THIS ENTRY

I visited this little charming capitol city in the northeast of India few years ago when my sister lived there. They call it 'an Abode in the clouds' and it lived up to the title - lots of beautiful clumps of clouds put up a dazzling display in the crystal blue sky when I was in air.

I had heard about this quaint archery gambling in Shillong before my trip. I was eager to see it. So I asked my brother in law to take me to the club. It turned out to be something very similar to racing courses albeit in a small campus. The atmosphere was very much like a pub with a dart competition. Little huts sporting charming little ladies with bright red as lips and tongues due to betel-leaves chewing, selling local alcohol to the punters.

Unlike the rest of Indian cities here there was evening life - thats mainly due to the fact that there is no arranged marriages in Shillong. Men and woman can meet and fall in love in social gatherings such as this one. It was refreshing to be in a relaxed gathering. In rest of India - due to arranged marriages, no woman could be seen anywhere in town after 6 !!!. Absolutely no night life expect for some drunken lads doing it secret.

The campus had a small open ground about the size of a tennis court where in the one corner was the target - a pine arrow stand to grip the arrows when hit. All around the court arranged in semicircle, were these little open huts with just the tops on for rain shelter - they faced the pine stand in the corner.

Each little archer hut represents a team. There were about 10 huts all around. Each team consisted of a small group of archers - mainly young lads very similar to the horse jockeys. However, there were one or two older archers too sporting tobacco pipes and smoke billowing out of them, looking rather pensive and proud of their skill. And there was this old chap who looked like the Godfather of the clan - he wore a chequered pink hat and light blue blazer. He carried himself self assured wise guy in the town - sure enough it turned out, he was the judge of the final count. He was in charge of the counting of the arrows and announcing the result.

We waited for half hour before the young team members started to get ready. They cleaned their arrows and polished them with care and fondness. When the time came they took position and waited for the signal to shoot. I took my position behind them to shoot my camera. Clicked few shots and wondered how long the shoot out will last.

Rather disappointingly it only lasted few minutes - perhaps 5 minutes ! Thats it - they all emptied their quiver full of arrows. Each one of the team would have shot about 25 shots. The shoot out was fast and frantic with all those arrows buzzing in the air. The whole action was complete as quick as it started but nevertheless it was fun. The round would have started in another one hour.

When the action was over they all went to collect the arrows from the target for counting. They added up the total and in this case the final count was 564. The betting will be for numbers 1 to 9. The winner in this case will be no.5. Only the first number counts and the rest are discarded.

Interesting and unique sport to Shillong. Worth paying a visiting if you ever pass thru this little city.


Additional photos below
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18th December 2009

A humble protest
Hi Teman, I have read some of your travel blogs and have seen the spectacular photographs posted by you and liked them too. But the commnet made by you in this post "In rest of India - due to arranged marriages, no woman could be seen anywhere in town after 6 !!!" made me SHOCKED. I think you should get to know India a little bit more before making such biased and irresponsible comments. I really don't know why no one ever protested in this issue before me.
20th December 2009

Thank you for pointing it out
Thnak you for pointing the mistake. I might be wrong in saying so for some areas but in general after 6 life is dead in India where as in western world personal life start after 6 ! I am an Indian as well ! I really think arranged marriages are doing more harm than good to young women. It forces people into marriage. Dowry is a direct result of that. Ill treatment of women by in-laws. Hording of gold in every houseold in India rise the prices up. Familys keep saving money for the daughters dowry instead of enjoying life like the western parents do by going on holidays every year, retire in dignity etc. I would call arranged marriages might have started in good faith but in reality it has become harmful for lot of young women. Hope the new-wave culture in Bangalore will spread to the rest of India. There, young people will choose their own partners in life and go forward. That will bring lot of young girls out into town after 6 like in western world. Life will be lively and beautiful. In Bangalor it is. Only wish the same for the rest of India. regards, ken
20th December 2009

Thank you for comments. I think in April and March every year you have this Tulip gardens open in Lisee village. I am not sure about once in 12 year shows. regards, ken
7th January 2010

Nonsense
This piece is sheer nonsense...not only does the author get many facts wrong about Shillong, but his claim that because of arranged marriages, no women/girls are visible on the streets of any other town/city in India is stupid and does not stand up to any scrutiny. Wonder if he has visited any part of India at all or simply parachuted into Shillong. For heaven's sake, visit other towns and cities and keep your eyes open. Or are you blind and, worse still, a zombie?
17th April 2010

interesting to see all level of age participate in traditional archery contest
It is a very great match that all ages are taking part in contest. But we can not know the exact length of a bow and an arrow soalso the distance they are shooting at a target . Besides we like to know the traditional bows and arrows making in details. If these are shown in the fotos mentioning in details will be benifiting to every one.
17th April 2010

interesting to see all level of age participate in traditional archery contest
It is a very great match that all ages are taking part in contest. But we can not know the exact length of a bow and an arrow soalso the distance they are shooting at a target . Besides we like to know the traditional bows and arrows making in details. If these are shown in the fotos mentioning in details will be benifiting to every one.
1st June 2010

Inquery
Dear Blogger, I plan to visit Shillong in august, and I want to buy a bow for my chidren. Can You suggest me something? Are there shops on the net as well, wher I could by one? Is there any homapage about the Shillong style arching? Thank You for your help in advance, Gyongyi Bankuti from Hungary
5th June 2010

Help querry
I am passing your querry to someone who had lived in Shilong for many years. Hope he would help. regards, ken
29th November 2010

Your comment about no Indian women outside after 6 pm seems to indicate that you may not have visited any metropolitan city. I suggest you do that before publishing a blog with wrong information. Whether you are Indian or not is not the issue. Publishing wrong information is. You seem to think that only Bangalore has a night life worth mentioning. My friend, maybe you should travel more and broaden your horizons. The dowry and other aspects that you speak about exist, but is on the decrease particularly in urban India, as awareness and casting off of old negative customs happen. You seem to have travelled only among rural areas in India, so get your facts straight and travel more before misinforming others.
1st December 2010

I am glad things are changing
Hi Rana, Thank you for the comment. I am an Indian myself and I wrote that article many years ago. At that time it was like what I have mentioned but if things are improving for the better then I am really glad. regards, ken
25th January 2011

ABOUT RESULT
sir iam from guwahati assam,sometimes i plays some number but i never gain .Ialways loose money. Please give some tips to earn money . THANKS
24th February 2011

result chart & target
i am a regular customer of your gambling.please send me the making nos. of different club frequently thanking you
28th December 2011

Archery ( Tir)
I am missing the archery..... A Superb Lottery system Love to play it again n again....

Tot: 0.128s; Tpl: 0.013s; cc: 8; qc: 24; dbt: 0.0216s; 24; m:apollo w:www (50.28.60.10); sld: 1; ; mem: 6.3mb