1

Our New Travel Series: Stories of Kutch

“We travel because we need to, because distance and difference are the secret tonic to creativity. When we get home, home is still the same, but somethings in our minds has changed, and that changes everything.” – unknown

I recently came across a wonderful book on Amazon, ” Pocket Atlas of remote islands: Fifty islands I have never visited and never will” by Judith Schalansky and Christine Lo. The book has the most fascinating maps and writing about places I had never even heard of (like the Lonely Island in the Kara Sea in Russia). This actually rekindled my love for travel, and the armchair traveller in me has taken over. I am hooked on to reading and planning, though my travel would be closer home.

When Tanveen, a wonderful person who also is a NIFT alumnus, a teacher and explorer with a shared love for travel, spoke about  her experience with the culture, crafts and people of Kutch, I was smitten!

Kutch – its craft-rich landscape, resilient and uber-talented tribal people, the Rann of Kutch and the avifauna of Banni grasslands have intrigued and attracted travellers – there is something for everyone! In addition to the culture, the fact that craft is a way of life doesn’t seize to fascinate me, personally. The handcrafted embroidery, the textiles and crafts that we see as luxury are a way of life for them.

To take that forward, Tanveen has very kindly agreed to share her experiences with all you lovely people and is writing a three part series on Kutch, her explorations, the people and the life in the region.

We are excited, and confident that you would enjoy this tremendously, as much as we at notjustashopper did hearing about it.

The Bhunga Huts of Kutch. Image source: Talk Architecture

The Block printers of Ajrakhpur; Image source: The Better India

The White Rann – the world’s largest salt desert. Image source: Walk the wilderness

Personally, would love to travel there with her and experience it for myself. Like they say, “Don’t listen to what they say, GO SEE”. So, till I go and see, I would let my mind go on this adventure, pointing the map to Kutch! As the Dalai Lama says, “Once a year, go someplace you’ve never been” – Explore. Dream. Discover…Be notjustashopper!

XO, Nupur

Cover image credits: GhumleIndia and Ilikelocal