Bombay Showcase

A day in the life

Surekha Tumdam and her daughter Divya greet you with aarti and take you deep into the folds of their home in Khamba village, a Gond adivasi settlement of over 105 families, on the outskirts of the Pench National Park.

Subhash Bhawre is the guide for the NGO Conservation Wildlands Trust, which interprets for you and introduces you to the life of the people who live according to the land.

You are invited to cut wood, draw water from the hand pump, hand pound and winnow rice, hand grind masala on a flatstone, and the dal that Tumdam’s family has grown, on a traditional millstone! In short, experience everyday life here. A chatty Tumdam took us to her backyard, where amidst her prized ‘reverse feather’ chicken, she showed off her greens and vegetable patch: they grow paddy in the monsoon and vegetables in summer. “We grow and preserve all our vegetables in summer because in the monsoons we don’t have time to go to the markets; we are busy in the paddy fields,” she says . The field is strangely protected by saris: it apparently scares off the wild deer and sambhar that stray in from the neighbouring forest. Over more talk about her life in her open frontyard, Tumdam treats us to gugri, a spicy dal dish, and excellent kalee chai, black tea with lemon grass.

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Printable version | Apr 15, 2021 5:23:15 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/mumbai/entertainment/A-day-in-the-life/article14383460.ece

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