Singapore, January 2014: I’ve never attended Thaipusam festivities before, only knowing of them as the Tamil festival where devotees endured multiple piercings and carried kavadis, with a period of cleansing observed before the day’s festivities. It was noisy, colorful, and confronting if you are not used to seeing people pierced with spikes of all sizes. Going this year, was a tiny introduction to the Tamil side of my heritage that I have not otherwise appreciated.