Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Nestled in Sunday’s paper was a flyer from Creative Handicrafts, an organization that works with slum women to teach them means of livelihood. Ordinarily, I abhor shopping, specially the mall variety, and operate with little free time, hence the preference for single-store purchase and experimentation with bagittoday. But this sounded good, and so it was. 
kurta detail, change purse
cutwork bag detail
Creative Handicrafts is aided by the local parish, the Sacred Heart, which has been around since this part of the suburb was dense forest, and I have heard tales of cheetahs lolling in the church compound, then it wasn’t slumzilla and post industrial, though the ancient, 1st C? Buddhist caves must have been there. The sale was very good, and the range of clothing and bags/ folders/ cases superbly designed, specially the block printed work and the embroidered shirts. They work using modern machines, and give a fair wage to the women from the surrounding slums
.Apparently most production is exported, and they sell locally what is left over. They also offer a range of jams, folders/purses, soft toys and shoes at a shop just off Mahakali Caves Rd, near Maruti School, also near Bhangarwadi. I reached via a meandering shortcut via the shanties past the Church but I wouldn’t recommend that unless you like exploring  shortcuts, like I do.
ps: this afternoon I took my friend V there. Was blessed! Met Sister Isabel. now 86, who began this effort fifty years ago. She still had a sparkle in her eyes, a proud honorary Indian.

Mother Mary blessed my friend P’s home on Sunday. Her home was freshly painted and decked up with flowers for this all important guest. But the first time I went to her home in the distant west, I was too early, had mixed up the time—so after my usual Sunday prayers at the temple, I went again to pay my respects, even the rickshawalla said, "Darshan adhoora nahin chodna chahiye..." Serene! I have a special connect with Maai.

At the temple in addition to the Vishnu Sahastranam, we’ll now be reciting Shri Suktam.for Navratri, rather Guruji will recite in his perfect Sanskrit and the likes of me will humbly listen, wondering in which lifetime will i learn this! Late last night they brought in Ambama’s statue in the shantytown past the wall, superb drumming and much festivity, lights twinkling late into the night.


PQ said...

No like shopping mall kind :) I love it, but haven't shopped for clothes in a year now...haven't worn all clothes I bought last year too.
And nice thing this Creative Handicrafts, beautiful pieces. And Sister Isabel - a total inspiration.
Me too trying to learn the verses...love listening to them in the morning.

austere said...

My verse recitation and hearing is limited to Sunday temple visits, but it drives home my ignorance.
The cut work bag is the best, I think.