India, Mother Ganga, Oral Stories from Rural India, Santhal Tribe, Short Stories, West Bengal
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Travelling through Rural West Bengal in Blazing Indian Monsoons- I

Monsoons are coming, Or are they ?

They say that this year it’ll not rain but the skies are going to weep. Clouds have arrived two weeks early. Even the universe knows, that this time children are angry,  they are not participating in anything. All are quiet and vulnerable.
Few years ago, i travelled through Rural Bengal once in majestic Indian Monsoons. Being there it felt like my soul grew while in only seeing the earth showing her abundance, her happiness. So much went inside me then that i had to write a letter to a friend who sat far. Not to tell her as such, but to learn myself what was going.

Clouds have arrived, I knew it ended right there with this photograph. I realised home is calling.
Silda Football Ground

Rain was never far behind. This happened to be that moment of my journey. This tree felt home away from home.

Travels have not been too comfortable but its liberating to learn that i could come to west bengal at this time. Clouds don’t seem to be moving ahead but are moving, and moving in circles. Fields are just too green everywhere, and roads connecting villages too red. Pond’s are over filled, and women, girls in them makes me feel at times, its worthless to get educated and get conscious of your knowledge. The only thing one has to learn is the language of the world that has no place for words in it. And yes the cows, goats, buffalos, ducks, hen and chickens are in plenty lazing around, sleeping, staring, fearing, grazing, walking, running on the road and off it. This part of the countryside has filled me with pride of some unknown sense or probably i am feeling just too free on this stretched journey after Bihar. Everything has been like an ongoing painting for me.

For the first time looking out at the landscape made me think of poems that i have not written. No painting or a photograph will fill the feeling of how i felt at that particular moment when i saw this beautiful long haired santhali woman bathing in the country side pond behind the palm trees. As I rode my bicycle i kept trying to look back at her, but i couldn’t as that one tree kept coming between us. As it stood with its mammoth bark, the world moved inside me. I cycled. Soon came another pond where i saw two women, far walking in tandem carrying filled earthen pots on their heads to home. Daily routine. Yet I realised in that moment, them taking water from the source to their home is so important for the whole universe to keep moving, form changing with each forward step like life moving, slowly becoming out of small proportions into one big entity. So important for those earthen pots to be used. For the water to go in various houses, different blood streams, yet becoming one. Everything is present and its not, everything is true yet it is not. That moment I just wanted to stand and see nature, to drink everything that wants to work through me.


Dear M, I should talk about it and not just write and i wont even write about all the people i met all this while like mama and her two little daughters in Bankura, it will take too long and this reliance connection has not been too reliable off-late.

But you know M, every single body has been so gentle that it is melting me to even think of leaving. Bangla has not been in anyway a hindrance not that i know it all, i don’t know it at all apart from a few sentences but my guide for past 26 days has become one of my best ever co-traveller. I feel i owe him a lot and nothing too. What i owe him is just the love i can give back to him.

Have been in mao-ist area for past 2 weeks almost and even got into a little bit of tension one after other three times, all because of this camera i carry. The third happened just yesterday when i wanted to photograph a snake crossing the street, and it irked one man out of many. Only because i was a traveller like none other, thinking to have self learnt the art of loving and leaving well. All ended in peace as others came forward in my defence considering my harmlessness after a point.

Well, now when you have told me about your job down there very far, i wonder when and how i can come and spend my time with you. And well, i didn’t laugh at your dream.

Love from a little hut with many children running clothe-less, its raining.

June 2011

And today as i post this, i just wish that when this year the rain comes, it washes our minds, our uncertainties and troubles. That it counters the venom that the world has seen all in 2020. May we come out new and happy like children bathing in a village pond.

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Thank you.

If today is the first time you have arrived on The Road to Nara, you are heartily welcome ~ Namaste

If you have any suggestions, please write in the comment box or feel free to write to me at

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I will take this opportunity to introduce you to About me and importantly;

As a co-traveller, my Ten Learnings from several years on the roadbefore you coarse on youown Road to Nara.

Also read: Top 9 Most Read Posts of 2022

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Also, You will be happy to know about My Little School Project. If you wish to come over for a visit someday that you must, you will be heartily welcomed here

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Hi, I am Narayan Kaudinya. And i welcome you on this journey, the Road to Nara ! I am an Ethnographer and a practicing Indologist. I did my masters in History and further learnt Sanskrit, Yoga and Nerve-therapy. At 24, pushing most academic sounding, office sitting works away, i felt compelled to know and understand the world and my country, Bharat/India. I travelled, and as it happened i took up teaching in Kashmir and further up in the remote villages of Baltistan in the foothills of Karakoram Ranges. For around three years and many states later there came a time when i felt that it was only while teaching i learnt how to laugh, to see, feel, breathe, love and cry -with children, and mostly resource-less parents in the harshest-freezing border conditions. I write, and work as a documentary photographer and Filmmaker, with numerous published, exhibited and some awarded stories. In my travels and life i have let nature lead me, the divine mother, and as a Yogin, my resolve here is to share my experiences and thoughts as honestly, and through them to blossom in everyone the power and possibility in pursuing your breath, that you seek your true nature with courage and curiosity. Here, on this road i will share my spirit, my love for nature, the elements of life that are us. And in doing so, i'll be happy to see you along.


  1. What a touching and beautifully expressive piece. I love the tree it is truly amazing. Life giving and sustainability for our earth. I loved the description of the women bathing in the ponds and the women filling their earth molded pots with water. May your prayers be answered regarding these difficult times. Love 💕 to you my friend from the US in North Carolina. May the remainder of your journey be blessed.

    Liked by 3 people

    • So lovely to have you here. Welcome. Thank you so much for your blessings. But i feel nothing will happen only by my prayers. Every human has to come together to pray and wish that this vibe, this virus washes away.
      Love from the Himalayas !

      Liked by 2 people

      • You are so welcome. I am glad you feel safe and I do believe you are right that God is in control and praying is so important. I pray for everyone’s safety. I am sending love from North Carolina. I bet it is beautiful where you are. 🌺🌸🤗 love Joni

        Liked by 2 people

      • Narayan, it did no take me very long to see that the content and quality of the work here is one which deserved further recognition and so this was the least I could do! I look forward to reading your response to the questions upon acceptance of the award! 😀🙏💛👊🎉💟💯

        Liked by 1 person

      • You are welcome. I have found that Black and White is a good way to preserve old faded color photos. With the iPhone, I can take a digital photo and change it to b&w and with some enhancements make it about as good or better than the original.

        Liked by 1 person

            • hey Dwight. Took some time to write to you here.
              Well, you know every person might be a photographer of self but having so many images all across platforms have also developed in people a sense of composing, light observations as well understanding the good from average 🙂 I think a good photographer need not worry. He is bound to stand out and become better.

              Liked by 1 person

            • Yes, I agree. Photography is an art that is special and whether in composition of the shoot or the creative adjustments in the photo editor, you can tell the difference between average and very good photographers. Thank you for your thoughts

              Liked by 1 person

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