Thursday, December 30, 2010
Ray is my husband's cousin. He lives in London and is the artistic Director for Sunshine International Arts. His work takes him all over the world most recently to Egypt. My favourite story from his frequent globe trotting is the work he did with women in a refugee village in Rajasthan, India. Ray spent several months working with the women in design and production to improve the standard of their traditional embroidery so that they could get better prices for their work.
I remember him telling me how frustrating it was because at every step he needed to get permission from the men in the village to work with the women. Everything relied on the permission of the men. Etched in my memory are the pictures Ray shared from the arranged wedding of a young village girl who had been married to an older man. The girl in the photo was expressionless; she looked neither happy nor sad. I wondered at her thoughts on not having a say in her destiny. Her face in that picture gave nothing of her feelings away.