For many years I had a dream of visiting India. Kevin & I talked about it a lot. While it seemed impossible, in 2007 I decided to actually look into it and see if I could make it happen. Six weeks later I was there! (Kevin had to stay home for work, but he encouraged me to go.) I went with an empty suitcase and purchased saris and salwar kameez suits there. The entire month of March I spent at an arts center in Aranmula, Kerala which gave me the opportunity to learn various traditional Indian arts. I took classes in dance, painting, Hindu and my favorite, woodcarving.
I loved woodcarving primarily because of my instructor Sha. He would tell me the stories of the Indian gods while I worked in the shade of the porch in the 100* heat. I could listen to him for hours. I especially loved the stories of Shiva–the creator & destroyer, the ascetic on the mountaintop, he of the third eye for inward vision.
There are so many beautiful and amazing things to see in India. Here are a few photos:
Aside from the classes, I also learned a lot about myself while in India. And while taking a ferry ride through the Kerala backwaters I saw how simple life can be. Just a small house on a narrow piece of land, a few chickens, family, friends–and the people seemed truly happy. Happier than many Americans with our wealth of choices. I’ve been aching to go back ever since.