As we traipsed through the sandy coastland, we could hear them again; the surge and fall of eternal rhythms echoing from a distance. The incantations grew louder and within moments we chanced upon women gliding on the shores with pots of beans on their heads. They were then split into two queues while the caretakers […]Read more "‘The shores unite us all in body and spirit’"
They sallied forth towards the harbour carrying the lord amidst them. The earth scorched their feet as they dragged themselves to the temple where awaited the caretakers of the divine. Worming their way way through the crowd, a group of women soughed out a tuneless chant summoning the spirits to the coast. Their voices began […]Read more "‘Knowledge without any purpose is meaningless to our existence’"
She fretted over her frock. Combing the pink frills gathered at its seams, she twirled her tiny fingers drawing patterns on her legs. A string of pearls lay beside her swaying to the winds. Namboo scrunched her nose as Lakshmi powdered her cheeks. Tears streamed down her brother’s face and he rebelled in silence for […]Read more "Their dreams might be small but have taken flight on numerous occasions"
“I think I was five when I first accompanied my father on a sailing boat. I remember being fascinated with the vastness of the ocean. The skies merged with the water, that day. Everyday had something new to offer. I take my kids as much as I can on my fishing trips. Of course, I […]Read more "‘No one wanted to marry her because she was dark skinned’"
Our tent overlooked the ocean. The day was blistering hot and the searing winds scoured our faces and arms. A few kids walked unsteadily towards heaps of sand wondering what the mighty seas had brought in today. Some looked for riddles hidden in its layers and others searched for treasures between clumps of dried shrubs. […]Read more "‘It all depends on how you observe life around you’"
“A group will always have violent and non violent elements. But no good has ever come from hurting anyone. I am Tamilian and my friend is Sri Lankan. And, we are both human beings. Why fight over borders and identities when we can all live in harmony? Today, I get to meet him once a […]Read more "‘The cyclone changed the character of the place’"
After a quick meal at a Marwadi bhojanalay, we decided to head towards the office of the Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) in order to seek his permission to stay in Dhanushkodi for a few days. We drove through a narrow alleyway and soon spotted the bureau hidden amidst cluttered buildings. At the entrance of […]Read more "‘They went after their families to send them a message’"
We met Sheen at around 10.30 am. The hills were shrouded in mist adding a certain charm to the mystery and allure of Attapadi. A pall of gloom descended on the town as we made our way to a tiny tea stall run by a mother-daughter duo. After a heavy breakfast of crispy appams and […]Read more "Rest Of My Family Travel Diary: Day 28 (Part 1)"
“While some tribesmen sold most of the land they owned to settlers for peanuts, others were duped into handing over their land in the guise of a better deal. When the Forest Conservation Act came into being in 1980, majority of their farmland was lost to the reserves. By the time the bill was passed, […]Read more "Rest Of My Family Travel Diaries: Day 27 (part 3)"
After a heavy breakfast of crisp rotis and aloo sabji, we headed towards Agali town in the morning. Joby planned to introduce us to a few officials who could provide all the information we required pertaining to tribal welfare projects apart from helping us out with research and acquiring comprehensive statistical data on the tribes. […]Read more "Rest Of My Family Travel Diary: Day 25 (part 1)"