Aranya Naturals

Rainy day in Munnar – worked at Aranya with the wonderful folks making color.

Today we worked on lovely silk scarves dyeing shades of soft purple and magenta using Lac and Cochineal. Tomorrow we will make those same colors on superior Pashmina. We will also try for a lavender. The dyers were so excited to create new colors with me and I am so happy to be working with them again.

It was so much fun to see all the new techniques they have learned – some of their own creation. They loved showing me what they were doing – shibori, dip dyeing, block printing, sewing and pressing and more was going on. Great color combinations – everything so beautiful!

A day of smiles all around.

Munnar, Kerala

I have arrived in Munnar.

The weather is the polar opposite of the Thar Desert. It is cool with an early morning mist on the mountains. On the drive up from the Cochin Airport there were several waterfalls. I could only think of what all that water coursing over the rocks would mean to the desert dwellers. I have the morning free – something that I have not experienced for three weeks. It actually feels a little strange. But it does give me time to go for a walk and reflect on my time in India as the sun slowly emerges from the clouds.

Chennai

First time in three weeks on my own.

I am staying in a B&B in Chennai. The caretaker only speaks Tamil and there is a young man helping him with limited English – fun adventure!

This morning I am going to attempt to get on a train to Auroville. I say attempt as I do not have a reservation.

It was a bittersweet parting from my Wholefoods Volunteer Team members – we did so much together and formed a strong bond.

At the same time by yesterday I was chomping at the bit to be on my own and have my own adventures.

We each had a number and would sound off to be sure we were all present – now I am a solitary #13!

Looks like a beautiful day outside – just waiting ’till 7:30 for breakfast and then I am off to visit Colours of Nature!

 

India – first update

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At last a free moment to post an update!

We have all been very busy cleaning and painting while waiting for the playground Wholefoods donated to arrive. It has been stuck at the Bangladesh border for days due to a strike. We have been told it will arrive today!

The 61 children were broken up into 13 groups.

I’d like to introduce you to my group who range in age from 5 to 11:

Priyanka

Dipa

Ripan

And brother and sister Purnima and
Akash

Rocky start!

So a bit of a crazy start to the trip. Last night my flight from Greenville to Newark for today was cancelled five minutes after I printed my boarding pass. The travel agent was finally able to book me out of Asheville to LaGuardia via Chicago for this afternoon!

I am so glad I am leaving a day early to catch my flight to Delhi.

My fellow team members at Wholefoods surprised me with a giant card!

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