It is Sunday of week 4 as I write and the power is out as it happens on a daily basis. Sometimes for only a minute or two and others for hours on end. This happens to be one of the longer times which is perfect for writing and editing photos as I’m not distracted with an internet connection:) Due to last Sunday’s big day...I took monday off to relax and get caught up on sleep and laundry. A wonderful evening meal at Sheeji's house to prepare for early Tuesday start at 6:00am for a train ride to Kochi. Sherif and I headed into the city to explore other clay product purchasing possibilities. The 5 hour train ride was long and hot. Our first place to visit was a small ‘factory’ of clay pots of all shapes and sizes. Even though they had many things and I enjoyed seeing their set up....there weren’t many pieces I liked that were for sale as they were orders for others so we were given the name of another place down the road. For all the travel and effort...there seemed to be little reward in terms of finding pieces I liked that were available for sale. Countless bus , taxi and rickshaw rides to surrounding areas... we finally stopped at 8pm to spend the night in the town of Thrissur. The hotel was 4 star and although at first I wasn’t prepared to spend the money they were asking....it didn’t take long to negotiate a great deal. A night of luxury after an exhausting day. When I awoke the next morning I had a great feeling in the pit of my stomach ....TODAY would be the day to find great deals on pots that were available and as it turns out .... it was! Both days continued along in a similar way as each place led us to small home studios and roadside stands. I put deposits on several groupings of pots to return in a few weeks to pick them up. Now the work must really begin to figure out how all of these things are getting safely to Dorset!
Returning home late Wednesday feeling like the trip was a success. Thursday was a quiet day in the studio....finishing candle stands and dreaming of shipping containers and packaging materials. Friday felt like a research day so I did some internet searching while there was power and learning new uke songs & yoga when there was none. There are 2 stores in town here that sell clay pots so we went to discuss purchases there and decided upon some great smallish flower pots as well as pretty floral tiles. Then it was off to a school function in a neighbouring town. The schools 23rd anniversary where they had erected a huge stage with lights & a sound system that would put most rock concerts I’ve seen in Canada to shame. There were upwards of 1000 people in attendance as all the families were there to watch their children dance and sing. It was especially hard to edit the photos for this because I literally have hundreds. The children were heart-meltingly adorable with their costumes and when I went behind stage to say hi and snap a few photos I really didn’t want to leave. I was asked to say a few words in the beginning of the ceremony which was a little scary to be on stage in front of such a large crowd but.....I loved it! I sometimes dream of being on stage performing - be it music, comedy or a lecture and it was fun to imagine myself in the future. We were there until well after the the bedtimes I imagined these young children having and finally left before its finish as my ears were literally starting to ache from the voltage of sound coming from the speakers!
Saturday was a fun filled day connecting to students and teachers at Peevee’s Public School which is an english speaking boarding school located very close to my home. Sherif and I along with pottery guru Manjeri and his student Krishna were there to help connect the kids to their “Earth is Worth” program. I was honoured to be there and the kids were all so respectful and full of wonder. A majority of the children had never made things with clay before so it was especially fun to see them excel at experimenting with this new medium. Word had gotten out about my little musical performance from last week so I was also asked to sing a few songs which I found I was a little more comfortable doing. I’m beginning to like the feeling of a microphone in my hand:) It was also fun getting a tour of the school after class and sharing stories of my own boarding school experience. Many teachers were encouraging me to bring teacher friends back with me so if there’s any teachers out there looking for a totally different experience....this school has my stamp of approval.
Okay....my writings are getting so long. Going to have to learn to edit more but for now this will have to do. mMuch love to all and thanks for sharing this amazing experience with me through your notes and good vibes. xo t
About This Journey
Combining my love of travel with my love of creating in clay comes this newest adventure. After spending 10 days in Nilambur last year during a 3 month exploration of India....I am returning to spend 9 weeks. Talented and generous clay artist - Sherif Nilambur invited me to share his studio space so here I am to take him up on his offer. The plan is loose in terms of what is being made and what will come of it but hearts are open so we can't go wrong.