In the last two and a half weeks, I have visited communities in Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and India. South Asia is a new discovery for me, and it has been rich with flavors, smells, textures, colors, and all-around beauty.
I have been welcomed so warmly in each location, and I wish I could have spent longer to share stories, particularly with the women I met. These warm welcomes have included flowers, drinks, and food. One of the new things for me has been being greeted with flowers – single flowers, small bouquets, garlands, and flower petals (tossed both on and at my head). I love the beauty. In homes, I was regularly greeted with sugary tea made fresh when we showed up at their door, and a few times, with fresh coconut water. At my last stop of the trip, Jyotshna decided to not only make tea, but suddenly sweet dough was being fried up as well for a warm and yummy treat.
It has been fun to be welcomed so openly and with such warmth. It has made me think about how I choose to welcome visitors who show up at my door – both the expected and unexpected. I hope I exhibit some of the warmth that I felt on this trip.
Here is a little photo journey of some of those welcomes.
My first flower garland… in Sri Lanka.
These flowers were on a table, but similar ones were tossed at me as well.
Coconut water: sometimes in the coconut, sometimes poured into a glass.
May the sugary tea commence, sometimes in beautiful tea cups.
Green papaya fresh from the garden, served with salt. (One of many fruits I was served, most were not documented.)
Making fresh fried dough… oh so yummy.
A wonderful little feast at my last visit for this trip in Assam, India.