Well, i wanted to post this article at the beginning of year but thanks to my busy schedule (read my lazy behavior) i am able to put my thoughts down almost after 7 months…but as they better late than never 🙂 So like every new year’s eve,the last evening of 2014 would have been the same usual,catching up with friends and family affair for me. But as i was very much adamant to welcome 2015 in a little different manner and i also had a budget constraint (since the prices of everything on those dates shoot up),me and my friend thought to go and experience a ‘real village life’ that will be a different experience, might not be very expensive and also we will get bookings since very few people opt for such experiences during the time of new year celebrations.
Sounds so exotic,at least it did to both of us and the icing on cake was that “Runn Utsav” was also happening during that period. Its a cultural festival hosted by one of india’s most culturally rich states Gujrat,where they spread out their most eclectic mix of traditional dances,singing,handicrafts and food. This festival culminates on the full moon night of December…wondering why full moon 🙂 Well, runn of kutch is the largest salt desert of the world and is one the few things shared by india and pakistan both, apart from poverty,corruption and oversensitive emotions about religion 😉
The moment we came out of Ahamdabad airport, it was a drive of around 2 hours to reach the heart of Kutch. The drive in itself was a beautiful experience with our small. little jeep zipping through on an empty highway and vast desert on both sides of us. The weather was cold and rough cold breeze was gushing through my face like waves. Honestly though i was quite excited to see something that i had never experienced but this feeling was mixed with pangs of fears that arises when you are about to do something that you have never done earlier and specially if you are two young girls getting into interior india with no cell phone network and no hotel reservation. So with these mixed emotions we finished our drive….. and were pleasantly surprised at out destination.
In the middle of those barren lands,suddenly there arises a most beautiful,colorful village from out of no where and a very warm welcome by our hosts 🙂 I could not take my eyes off from the women folk of the family with who we were to spend the next four days of our life. It was like as if all the colors available in nature were having a party together on those lovely clothes adorned by the women of the house, such varied hues,varied mix of shades… and to add to my nostalgia those pretty attires were clubbed with equally amazing traditional silver jewelry.
Post catching some breath from such lovely display of all things beautiful i let my senses drool on the rustic,earthy scenery that was available to the inhabitant of this place. Cute little mud huts and in front of them in the open space,there were handmade beds,called ‘charpai’ in local language,with such fascinating bed sheets on them that you will forget to sit on them! The most amazing place for me here was the kitchen which had ‘mitti ka choolah” a kind of stove mainly used in earlier times but still is used in some parts of rural areas.
Next morning we headed for the great runn of kucth…and the visual was breathtaking. once there, i took first few minutes to let the surroundings sink in my heart,i gazed deeply at the vast white span in front of me for as long as i could without blinking, just to take in as much as i could…trying to make a movie in my mind and store a file of it in my heart and wished that i could play it again and again later whenever i wanted. The place gave me an opportunity to be able to listen to my own heart beat,to be able to feel the sensation that my skin feels with a gust of chilling breeze. In that moment all i wanted was just to be with that barrenness,with that whiteness and with that vastness…feeling every inch of myself as if along with the place i was exploring my own self too!!!