Saturday, December 26, 2009


I got out my vintage art supplies recently.  Sakura Cray-Pas oil pastels, given to me by either my grandmother or my great aunt Grace.  There's no date on the package, but I know I've had them since childhood.  They've clearly spent more time in storage than in use, but their colors and packaging are very familiar to me.
The colors of my knitting wanted to play along.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Malabar Coast

How romantic does that sound - the Malabar Coast. 
The Lakshadweep Sea.
I waded in it, and it was very warm.
Spent a week in Kerala, and saw so many beautiful sights, but first I want to indulge my penchant for beach pictures and talk about the Alleppy beach.

Totally wanted one of these kites, made of single sheets of mylar, with videocassette tape tails.  It was a Sunday, and lots of people seemed to be headed to the beach in family groups.  Heh - I actually thought it was a bit crowded when we arrived.

Further up the beach, though, it was more solitary.  For some reason, I never get tired of the beach footprint photo.  Evokes the whole thoughtful barefootness of being there.

We were not really alone, of course.  Roving groups of young Indian men approached us and competed among themselves to act ridiculous.  But then, while I was doing a little spinning,

a decently-behaved set of local youths came and started chatting with my husband in broken English.  They asked him what I was doing, and I demonstrated how I was turning loose fibers into string, showing them they way twist enters the fiber.  They were delighted, and one kid pulled out his phone to get a picture, then decided it really called for video.  So I have actually been videotaped spinning on the beach in Alleppy, Kerala, South India.  If anyone sees it on YouTube, you have to let me know.
(This is especially funny for those of us who devote ourselves to documenting indigenous textile techniques, and scour the Internet for footage of traditional spinning - complete role reversal.)
As we made our way back to the main family area, we were stunned by the sight:

It's hard to convey in one photo, but the beach entrance was teeming with families, and the sky was filled with variously sized dots of flying kites.  This was clearly the place to be, of a balmy Sunday evening.