On The Road
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In love with Sipna

Sipna was a very memorable time. Very precious days and nights amongst the oldest tribals of Maharashtra, many artists from various fields.

The residency happened in the last 10 days of December. The days were sunny and nights damn cold. We were many together. Everyone skilled in their practises. There were painters, sculptors, Architects, local artists, farmers, Photographers, Dancers, Performers and also artists from other continents.

We were somewhere deep in the jungle of teak. Probably in some village on the other side of Melghat Tiger Reserve. The river Sipna danced like a snake on water cutting an old plateau. big, small naturally sculpted rocks. There was an old sage. I remember him because in his hut stayed a woman. She was diseased, she said, shyly. She showed us a lump that had grown out from the insides of her thigh. Babaji is treating me, she said. There were three peacocks, a deer nearby and a snake that lived with the old sage.

One day we went on a day’s long walk to see Sipna river meeting with the river Tapi. It was like a pilgrimage. We walked all afternoon. Somehow it became an emotional journey for me, that walk because it was the first time I saw poverty in its most raw form. We passed through many small villages consisting of only huts. Men and women seemed to be working so hard and eating so less that my gaze kept going towards the ribs of a man whom I met in the fields. I made an image of him. When he smiled as I left, leaving and his smile together became a pillar of assurance as it seemed then.

8

It was the last day of december when he decided to perform. The river had been a quiet companion for all of us. We have seen local fishermen catching different type of fishes at different times in a day.

He started early, just in time when the young sun starts to show up.
If i can, i will not mind going to the village again. To Melghat.

This entry was posted in: On The Road

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Hello, My name is Narayan. I am a teacher and an Ethnographer. After college i opted for teaching in far away villages of the Himalayas and later in Central rural India. And gradually as I wandered along the local streams and rivers, unending fields i learnt not only about myself but India and what is it to be Indian, living with various families throughout India. And to tell you, there is nothing more than a smile and an effort to make their children lives better that makes them happy. I have been independently working as a writer, photographer and filmmaker. For past many years I have been travelling the Indian subcontinent teaching and extensively documenting rural and her communities. Learning and understanding culture, communication and various ways of human mind and body. I am a student of History and did my masters in it. And later studied Sanskrit. When you realise the alignment of your spirit with the world around you, winds take you to places in the Himalayas, where you learn the ancient Yogic way of nerve healing, I can't really know myself but since then all the above mentioned things altogether has helped me generously to enter homes for shelter and food in the night. I come back to Delhi. Here mother and I run a small school for children.

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