Photographer's Note

We had rented a car for five days in New Delhi to travel to Agra and Rajasthan.

Our driver Sattish bhai was a kind young man who graciously took us to his home in a village in Rajasthan.

This is their inner courtyard, lined by two bedrooms. There is a small kitchen on one corner, a cot to sit on, and the pitchers of water under the shade.

There is no running water in the house, so his wife and mother have to fetch water from a deep tubewell fitted with an electrical pump available in the neighborhood.

Twenty years ago his mother had to use sheer muscle power to draw heavy buckets of water from a well. Deep tubewells and electricity have changed their life.

Sattish and his brother both work in the city, they drive tourists to various destinations, so they have to live away from home often more than a month at at time.

In summers they return home for three months during which time they till their ~1.5 acre land to grow wheat.

They own a camel, which was worth ~Rs.20,000 when they bought it, which eats ~Rs.100 worth of fodder a day, but helps them cart their produce to the market, and they also rent the camel out on occasion. The camel should live for ~15-20 years.

They also have a water buffalo. In the morning his wife takes the buffalo for a short walk, then they wash the buffalo and tie her up in the outer courtyard under a shade. The buffalo eats all day but gives them milk in the morning.

Sattish has three children (here you see two of them). The girl goes to school, and Sattish would like her to go to high school. No one in his family has been to high school or college yet, so he was very interested to know that I personally knew a few girls from villages in Rajasthan, who actually went to college and became scientists.

Sattish's father is retired. Although "he is still strong" Sattish "would prefer him not to work because he has done enough in his life. Now it is time for him to enjoy."

The day we visited his house, Sattish's sister had come to visit them with her baby.

We sat down on the cot and drank tea with sugar, which Sattish's wife made. On our way out we were met briefly by Sattish's father who bade us farewell.

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Additional Photos by Animesh Ray (AnimeshRay) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 689 W: 44 N: 846] (9089)
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