A boy in Pushkar, India, fixing a pillow covering for a customer. I think you might agree, his sewing is performance art.
Some of the moments surrounding the wedding of my dear nephew, Christian, and his beloved partner, Cameron. Family and friends wish them life's bounty as they build their life together. Zwika, Spencer, Sam, Pam, Orly, Omer, Natan, Liat, Jane, and Art, unable to join us in person, were very much with us in spirit.
This video is a sampling of sounds from Pushkar, an especially musical place in India.
Women on the dusty road sing a cappella, wedding guests dance and process to marching bands, pilgrims call and respond in a mountain temple, a chanter rings a bell to gather the faithful.
When you are the creator of the universe and drop a tear or a lotus leaf in the desert, you will not be surprised that Hindu pilgrims flock to the lake that springs up there. Nor will you wonder when, chanting and singing, they’re drawn to its waters to bathe. Shrines and temples won’t surprise you either.
What about tourists who come and take incense and prayer bowls and pictures of monkeys and videos home to remember you by? I suspect you are taking us all in benevolent stride.
Here in Cleveland I send you my images, music and time.
This morning I made the bed and wondered if my time in India might account for the lightness and contentment I feel lately. The question came with a strong sense of being onto something.
Rationally, it makes no sense. Fifteen days in a small corner of a vast and complex land, lacking language or historical perspective - how could this change anyone? We plunked ourselves down in hotels, trains, tuk tuks, taxies, metro cars, markets, temples, eateries and monuments. We were stared at, touted to, smiled at, talked to, photographed, swept along and humored by the people. India let us in. A country where hustle is survival and survival is gas in the tank or tea in a glass allowed us for a couple of weeks to let go and simply be.
Be a drop in the ocean. Be a speck in the storm. Be a clueless westerner, humbled by ancient, inscrutably beautiful forms. Be welcomed. Be borne.
Here we hike to one of those welcoming places.