Monthly Archives: October 2013

Jungle Queens

I love the squashed rondelle shape in a bead and use it a lot. I must prefer them to round beads at some deep unconscious level because I rarely use the latter.

imageAt Samunnat, we are working on new designs for the wonderful Paulette Of Kazuri Beads. We are very lucky to have this relationship with her.  In the After the Monsoon cone of silence, I can say that I think Paulette and I share certain characteristics. Like…neither of us are at all driven.  You wouldn’t say that. Not at all.  But we both have pretty busy brains and are the kind of women who like to maximise the moment. I used this romantic phrase with my dear MM when we skyped and I told him I was maximising a spare moment.  How we laughed.

But back to Rondelles.  At Samunnat, we are making some beads for leather and had some small scraps left over. Too small for the slides but enough to play around with on Rondelles. We all loved them and could imagine them as a long necklace on black or chocolate leather cord. I will post more photos of other colours we played with. They might get back to our Galleries in Australia or they might be snaffled up by the Colourful Journeyimage trippers if they get in first!

As well as playing around a bit with some off duty beads, we treated ourselves to some sweets…mithai…very sweet milk based treats sold by the nice young men at the Calacutta Sweet Shop on the main drag. I love these places. This one reminds me of the Blue Bird Cafe at Leeton or the Niagara at Goulburn. But maybe that suggests I have been away too long!

And finally for now, a big Namaste to Mattie in Geelong, my long distance IT guru who taught me, via his cousin, how to get my photos the right way up and how to make more room for photos on my iPad. Mattie, your blood’s worth bottling! Dherai dhanyabad!


The wonderful Robyn Gordon reminded me to listen.  She shared a poem by Rosa Cook.


This is a poem for someone   image

who is juggling her life.

Be still sometimes.

Be still sometimes.


It needs repeating

over and over

to catch her attention

over and over

because someone juggling her

life finds it difficult to hear.


Be still sometimes.

Be still sometimes.

Let it all fall sometimes.


So tonight, after working through our one day weekend, Kopila and I sat on the balcony watching the fire flies and listening. We didn’t quite see Kanchenjunga ( this photo was not taken from the balcony!) but we knew it was there.

From the Old Country

Well, I am not sure how this will go! I am posting using my iPad and for the first time ever, did not carry my chunky faithful PC over here. Not feeling totally confident with the WordPress app but the proof will be in the pudding.
And hasn’t it been a long time between slices. Of pudding. So to speak.
I didn’t want to mix my metaphors.

imageLast month, when I looked at the full moon, it was shining brilliantly over the Walls of China in Lake Mungo National Park and Tory Hughes and I were with some wonderful ladies reconnecting with our innate creativity! We had a fabulous time and wonderful creations were made. As well as friendships.

Last night, the full moon hung over fields of rippling wheat. Fireflies flew, horns honked, rickshaw a trundled by and I was in an environment that could hardly be more different to Lake Mungo. But again spending time with special women.

My months in Nepal are always very busy. As well as working on new colour families in existing designs, we are also working on new designs. As we fill a very huge order, deal with festival related delays in clay arrivals, catch up on 5 months of events, develop a new data collection system, trial a new initial interview tool etc etc the ladies have to master new skills so that when I return to Australia, they can confidently produce the items to a high standard.

Some of them face really tough situations. Over the years I have learnt that what looks like an obvious quick fix often isn’t. More often than not, sustained self driven change comes from slowly listening to one another, sharing what works. An email from my friend Cath prompted an amazing discussion today where we talked, as we produced magnificent Golden Brown, Ivory and Chocolate Sundari beads, about the strategies we used in tough times. There was a lot of acknowledgement of the value of sharing problems. Knowing that we are not alone.

The Dashain festival is a particularly challenging time for goats – many of whom met their

Dashain decorations

Dashain decorations

maker over the last ten days. I don’t mind a goat curry every now and then but successive days of fried goat entree followed by curried goat daunts even my Nepali family here. A few days of tarkarri matrai (vegetables only) has been fabulous! All the goat has been accompanied by much dancing and singing.

I hope I have been able to add the photos!