Update 8: Photo Shoot!

We had a fantastic day of sari making followed by a photo shoot and singing and dancing to celebrate. These women can really move! We have been working very long days to get all the saris and oral histories done. We borrowed a table from the local library so that we could be working on muliple saris at once. We have been breaking up in groups of several women to work on each sari, with one woman as the lead artist making final decisions on each piece with my input.
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It has been so inspiring to talk to these women. I has also been wonderful to get to know Nandita Ahmed, who is doing an amazing job capturing photo, video, and sound. I have been trying to visit all of the women’s homes to get a better sense of their lives. I have made it to 8 of the 12 women’s home’s so far. We are up by 6 am to do home visits so that we can start sari work by 8 :30 am (not a problem given horrible jetlag!). The most amazing discovery is that many of them now have solar panels so that they can have light in the evenings. The solar panels are made locally and they enter into a three-year payment plan with the company that sets it all up.

Tomorrow morning we have rented a powered country boat so that I can check out the other side of the island and go down to the southern tip to see the Bay of Bengal. I am trying to understand the topography of this area better and gather anecdotal information on climate change effects. The island is 20 miles long so it not easy to cover on foot.

I will meet the women again tomorrow afternoon.
All the best,


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