The research I did for day six is here. Once again the reality was far better than the itinerary suggested.
After an exciting post breakfast hour of having our photos taken with the visitors to the fort we were driven by jeep to a small village, again the prince accompanied us, where we saw the terracotta ornaments being made. It was a little chilly and rain was in the air but that didn’t stop the fun.
The clay is dug, allowed to dry then rehydrated to use on the wheel.
The wheel is operated by the potter placing a stick in a small hole on the bed then rotating it until a high speed is reached.
The clay is thrown in the usual manner.
Pit are used for the firings.
Cow pats are used for fuel
I saw piles of fired work, here are some oil burners.
Musicians amongst the animals
The figures were piled up everywhere in the village.
But also used to decorate their own houses.
Then time to say our fair-wells to the Prince and Pokaran. He gave each of us a gift of a small hand woven bag and a terracotta sun – the sight of which brightens my cold winter garden wall.
Back on the coach for a long drive which gave me time to digest my adventures so far as well as taking a snooze.
Another palatial hotel at Jaisalmer, Hotel Rang Mahal, where the view from my bedroom window of the desert and a small encampment was in stark contrast to the lush hotel grounds.
After a quick turn around we were back on the coach to see the puppets being made.
They are made out of the wood gathered from the desert.
The puppets are dressed in re-cycled fabrics
Everyone, children included, help with the making of the puppets.
I was disappointed with the quality, unfortunately they were jut cheap tourist tat. I was offered one for R800, eventually paid R500 only to see them on sale later in the day for R200. But at least my money went straight to the maker.
Where to next? Another emporium of textile goodies.
This lady was cutting fabric squares for cushions.
We were shown how the old clothes are cut up then re-worked into patchwork.
Depending on the age of the fabric and the amount of gold embroidery determines the price of the work. The older the more expensive. the story was told that the clothes used to be burnt in order to reclaim the gold in the threads.
The young man was beading a piece of cloth – very labour intensive.
Bundles of the quilts were waiting to be shipped all over the world. There seems to be a never ending supply of fabric to be used.
A walk through the town – puppets, puppets, puppets!
And the chance for one of our group members to be dressed in traditional costume.
The world and his wife wanted a photo of the lovely lady!
Then we had a guided tour around the area.
Gnesha was everywhere to be seen.
Our local guide explained the significance of the decoration. When a couple are married the image of Gnesha is painted on the house with the date of the wedding. This is an invitation to all to attend the celebration.
One of the icons of India – a Royal Enfield motorbike. I assumed that the English factory was in Enfield, Middlesex but it wasn’t. Redditch in Worcestershire was where they were produced.
A welcome swim in the hotel pool then an Old Monk (rum) with lime and soda before dinner. Took my tired body to bed for an early night.