\u00a0\n\nThis trip in early 2006\u00a0 marked the start of my solo travelling life.\nA novice solo traveller a bit nervous, but as usual serendipity helped me along\u2026..\nArmed with terrible photography skills, a simple Point & Shoot camera, and good people around me, I\u2019ve captured a small fraction of my terrific experience into pixels.\nFirst \u2013 spending a day with nomads:\nAs we were driving along the highway returning from a village, we spotted a family parked on the adjacent field. We walked up across the field and approached them. They asked us to sit and chat and offered us a cup of tea\u00a0 -which I gladly accepted. Not knowing that this is tea made using GOAT milk!! The thought of this hurt my non-adventurous palate \u2013 but it tasted great in the end!\napproaching the nomad family\nminimalist tent\nsettling down for tea\ntea being prepared in the kitchen\none of their camels taking a snack break\ntwo members of the nomad family\n\n\nthe cradle frame \u2013 bearing the signature work that is also found in the swat valley\nenjoying his bowl of tea\nWe talked about their life model \u2013 about sustenance and finances\u2026.\nThe family owns a herd of goats. They own no house and everything they own in terms of material possessions can be loaded on to their camel cart. They live on one field for a few days and then move on to another. Is there a cost involved \u2013 rent for example \u2013 in living on the field?\nOf course NOT! Not only do these nomads not pay a paisa as rent, instead they charge the land owner \u2013 for having their herd of goats living on the field and fertilising the earth !! \u00a0 What a perfect model!\nSo they stay in one spot for a fortnight or so and then move on. The only shelter they need is from the sun and the little tent provides that. Am not sure how they manage when the temperatures rise above 45 degrees Celsius in summer\u2026 But they have no need for protection from the skies as it rarely rains in the Kutch.\nA large part of the nomads wealth is worn on the woman\u2019s body. Magnificent chunky gold jewelry adorns these women \u2013 large necklaces, large nose rings, large earrings\u2026 and all traditional and gorgeous! City women are deprived of such joys \u2013 for fear of getting mugged!\nThe plan to return that night for a sleepover with them, did not materialise as I was too tired to come back out 30km out of the city. A missed opportunity that I regret tremendously\u2026..but this regret will probably be the driving force that will take me back someday..\n***\nNext a peep into the villages of the settled gypsies\u2026\nThe rabaris are very closed and will not allow outsiders easily into their settlements. Maama\u2019s presence solved all that. Maama goes from village to village and buys embroidery work from Rabari women to sell in the market\u2026So he knows everyone and everyone loves him. And some of that love\u00a0 was extended to me \u2013 his guest.\n\nThe compound of a typical house\n\n\n\nRabaran in the village lane\nA patriarch\nA earring that I am envious of\n\n\nMaama and villagers\n\n\nMaama showing a unique silver adornment that almost every one has \u2013 a toothpick and a earwax remover\n\n\nhappiness\n\n\n\n\nin the village market\n\n\n\nMaama\u2019s Mrs.\nIvory wedding band\n\n\nYarn of goat wool\nAbout Kutch Art\n\nDoor art \n\nThe embroidery work of the Kutch is famous and so I haven\u2019t spent any time on showing off this aspect of Kutch in this travelogue but several Antique pieces are available in the wovensouls collection.\nI have seen some swat furniture \u2013 and the art work on the folk wood pieces in the Kutch is very similar to the Swat work. Since these settled groups in the Kutch were once gypsies, it is likely that they picked up this art on their way to this location \u2013 or may be part of the same genomic group\u2026.maybe some experts know the answers\u2026\nMe, I am just enjoying discovering common traits between tribes separated by geography, and making conjectures about their common origin!\n\n\n\n\none of the many kutch textile art forms\n(shawls of this type are exhibited on wovensouls here)\nSomeday i will go back and take more pictures and delve deeper into their lives to explore these conjectures further.\nA few pieces of royalty sponsored art of the Kutch\u2026..\n\n\nIvory accent for keyhole\n\n\n\nivory inlay\n\n\n\n\n\nOther sights\u2026\n\nimpact of earthquake\ngorges\n\nStrange geology\n\nThe great and the little Rann of Kutch were once part of the oceans. And then something happened (not quite sure what something HUGE happened) And these are now dry salty deserts. Remains of ancient ships and large anchors can still be found in the barren lands.\n\n\nSalted and dried fish \u2026..\n\nWild Camel herds grazing along the highway\n\nThe palace at Mandvi\u2026..lots of royal colors to Kutch as well but I prefer to focus on the folk aspects \u2026..\nmaama & me\nThis trip was taken before I became interested in photography \u2013 so the images are with a regular Point & Shoot camera.\n\nMore article on the Kutch listed here.\njm\n\n\nThe post A cup of tea with Nomads and Gypsies of Kutch appeared first on The Art Blog by WOVENSOULS.COM.