Notes from the field: Charaka (Karnataka)

August 19, 2014
By Rang De Team

This is an account of the overnight field trip to Charaka in July that was undertaken by Rang De team members and social investors. This write up has been shared by Raghu Chandra, part of Rang De’s tech team

It was a rainy Tuesday morning in July when we started from Bangalore. Within minutes of boarding the bus, most of us fell asleep as we all had a very early morning start! On the way we stopped near Tumkur and had a much needed cup of coffee. As we drew nearer to Sagar in Shimoga District it started raining again. As we peered out of the bus windows we could rich green all around, the beauty of the place is hard to describe and has to be experienced.

Following our GPS for about an hour we reached Charaka!! When we got down from the bus, the mud road and the rain just seemed like some one is welcoming us to a place where mother nature is still immaculate, and there is no traffic or pollution.

We were all starving by now and feasted on the hot, tasty yet simple food that was served to us with a great deal of warmth and hospitality. After a while we were taken to towards the place where all the weaving activity happens. Because it was already late afternoon we could not spend much time with the weavers but we headed towards the accommodation provided by Desi!

We were pleasantly surprised to see the simple rooms where we would be staying overnight. Cow dung paste was applied to the floors of those rooms to keep the rooms cool, there was no electricity with one small lamp providing light. We then had a brief discussion about Rang De and engagements with the partners, then after sometime we all had dinner and just crashed as we all were quite tired.

The morning was so beautiful and peaceful that we woke up early and there was hot water kept ready for us to have bath. Once all of us were ready, we headed towards prayer hall where we had a brief discussion with Prasanna sir. Afterwards we were taken again to the weaving section, wherein we were shown how weaving is done. We spoke to people there and some of us even tried printing the colour blocks, we took all possible photos and videos we could take even though all our mobile batteries were running low. We left Charaka around noon reluctantly but all of us had to go back to Bangalore. We had our lunch on the way Shimoga and then with all the discussions and fun we came back to Bangalore!

As we sped down the highway towards Bangalore, I couldn’t help but think:
There is no replacing our connection with mother nature and earth, you will understand meaning of life when you really get aligned with nature!

You can support Charaka’s women by investing a small amount in their enterprise

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