The Clay Maestry

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    What could be the most moldable material, most of us would say “clay”. It is the softest when wet and turns really hard when heated. Many cultures use clay to symbolize phases in life. This week we have the story of a potter. The hands that shape the pots. That have fallen out of use in the modern world but still find place as decorative items in the showcases. Though they are outdated , there are people who prefer storing water in these pots and they also serve families in remote rural areas. Lets take a look into the life of a potter woman.

    nishu-3-4   Continuing the legacy of the pottery business her clan has passed on to her, her hands swiftly work over the clay she has stored to make pots. Years passed by and the wheel kept spinning never to stop . It has been a very long journey since the day she took over this business. And when asked to narrate her story she took a long deep breath and started to speak. Being greeted with a smile from the other side I thought it was all well with her. When she just set her foot into making pots, she sold pots house to house carrying them on her head , and slowly she managed to put an outlet by the highway where she sells the pots now. Only on days of labor strikes she is off, all the other days she works from 8:30 in the morning till & in the night. Her husband not being very responsible she had to take up the burden of educating all her four children upon her, she could provide them with decent education and now they are on their own.  Shortage of raw material, lay and firewood make pottery not so sustainable business, Environmentalists fighting against digging and deforestation have added so much to this issue but still it is the only skill she has and she is bound to make a living from it. A group of families who have inherited ths trade from their ancestors have now formed a society, thus by enabling the local government to identify such groups and help them in every way possible.

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    Sustaining in this trade of hard labor for such long years is indeed a symbol of bravery and commitment. Having educated all her children, she displays a spark f satisfaction and pride in her eyes . As of now she says with her eldest son,  though being old , roughly of 70 years her ability to safeguard her self respect and independence is appreciable, She doesn’t have anyone to take over this business after her so she would be the last one in her lineage.

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    ——– Krishna Gopika NR