Visiting with Farmers
I was out exploring again, camera in hand, when I came upon some farmers working in their field. It looked like an interesting situation, but I felt a little shy, so kept going and didn’t stop. After driving a bit further, I stopped, and realized I really did want to talk to those people in the field after all! So I turned around and went back. It is always a little nerve-wracking approaching new people with your camera…not knowing if they are going to welcome you or be stand-offish, or even hostile. But this day, I need not have worried!
As I approached, they were looking at me and laughing with each other in a self-conscious, “do you think she’s coming to take our picture??” kind of way. As I got closer, I started talking to them and they warmly welcomed me, showing me what they were doing, telling me about their crops. The man was cutting cilantro, and the woman was harvesting spinach. An older woman was sitting, just visiting with them as they worked. I visited with them for awhile, and then began to photograph them.
Here are the results:
This woman was giggling like a little girl. I can’t remember why exactly. Whether it was over the fact I was taking her picture, or if it was when she told me she had seven children. Either way, she found something pretty amusing! And she was terribly funny!
A more serious pose.
A spinach farmer. She was cutting the spinach…harvesting it for market. She was a beautiful woman, but shy about having her photo taken. She did amuse me for awhile, and let me get a few shots…
The wooden frame in the foreground is usually covered with fabric and is used particularly in the summer for shade, as it gets incredibly hot here.
This man was so joyful, and had the best laugh! He roared with laughter as I photographed him. I love this photo!
Taking a break from cutting spinach.
A close up. She had the most beautiful eyes. She let me take this shot and one more, and then said “that was enough”. Not in an angry or annoyed way, just kind of like, “how could you possibly want to take so many photos of ME?”.
As I left, they bundled up a huge bunch of spinach and a huge bunch of cilantro for me to take home. So generous! What a great memory of these wonderful people. They also asked if I could give them copies of the photos, and I said, “Of course!”.
I got the photos developed, and a few days later returned to give them the photos. I found the older lady walking down the street and stopped to tell her I had her and her friends’ photos. She looked at the photos happily and invited us to her home for tea. We accepted, at her insistence, and had a lovely visit. She told us about her family…her seven children, 24 grandchildren and 6 great grandchildren! She lives with some of her children, but is often alone during the days, as her children are hard at work on the farm, and her grandchildren are at school. She is often lonely. She invited us back any time for another visit.
Here she is getting the tea ready to serve us. She was anxious to serve us well, and got out naan, grapes, and oranges for us to eat. Hospitality is hugely important in this culture, and is not just a responsibility, but a joy and privilege. They love hosting, and feel honoured to having guests in their home.
A lovely indoor portrait of a lovely woman.
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