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Photographer's Note

This picture was taken in the early morning in Bungamati traditional Newari village, Lalitpur 30km south of Kathmandu, depicting a community water source that serves about 250 households where women have to wait in queue sometimes for hours to get water. I was attracted very much by the empty cannisters waiting to be filled while piped water from the faucet was being watched so anxiously ensuring that every drop counts.

Those of us who live in the developed world sometimes take our access to clean water for granted. Water is one of the basic human necessities but a large proportion of the population here is devoid of access to safe and adequate drinking water, and water scarcity is one significant challenges to our world today. The demand for water is increasing and crucial in addition due to the increasing population and water sources alone has become inadequate to service everyone.

But why women are so closely related to water and what do they have in common here?
They are both the Source of Life. The Bagmati river in Nepal is revered as goddesses that give life, and this spiritual symbolism which connects women and water is why women have been assigned throughout history as the caretaker of water in many traditional cultural settings, including Nepal where the majority of the people are Hindu. Water symbolizes life itself; with water the women are in charge of constant renewal, cleansing and sustenance. The very meaning of day-to-day life cannot be separated from the life surrounding water and caring through water. In this sense, in much of Hindu, domestic work is a form of spiritual exercise.

Those shiny empty water pots are not merely containers; they are the very vessels of life, the extension of a way of being and their particular shape and size affect the body and posture of the woman carrier over many years....

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Additional Photos by abmdsudi abmdsudi (abmdsudi) Gold Star Critiquer/Gold Star Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 4030 W: 141 N: 9283] (40174)
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