Rolling along the sands, the wind blowing past, I slowly peddled my cycle. The dry shrubs, rust sands, an occasional green tree ran along my side. The early evening sun was beating down across the land. I was on my way home from the neighboring town.As I picked up a steady pace, thoughts of home, work, and my children filled my mind. Soon, I found my mind ambling through memory, my parents, my childhood and work. I belong to a family of artisans who work with lacquered wood. The art had been passed down through generations. The baton was now with me. I do not recall sitting down to learn or how it was passed down. It seems as though it came from within. Even at the age of five I knew how to work things. I knew that this is what I would be doing. Many, many years ago, my family had come here to Nirona from a place that now lies in Pakistan. Bringing with them this art that originated there. Our style is different.
The entire family works on it. The women mix powders and heat the lacquer, setting a base for us men to work with. Children watch, learn, and play with the tools. I have two sisters and four brothers. My brothers and I now work together; we go to Delhi, Bombay and many places as work calls us. I even employ a few people to help in the workshop.
Work largely includes orders. I make samples to show. Based on that I get commissioned to work for a larger quantity. Storage is a problem. Hence I have to ensure the products are transported soon. Work comes in tides. It is seasonal. As work makes its way and years edge on, many things come our way. I think of my children, my three sons. A smile steals across my face as I picture them, playing with tools, trying to work, all even before they could walk.