Srinagar waterside

Srinagar, in the basin of a broad, flat valley – an ancient lake bottom – is a city threaded with waterways, defining urban settlement and marshy market gardens alike. Like railways they go against the grain of road traffic, running past people’s backyards more often than shopfronts, following their own exclusive right-of-way.  A first-time visitor in 1978, I fell under the spell of the unmotorized quiet and gliding passage of boats paddled or poled through the narrower channels.

That sense of separation from the vastly increased and modernized hubbub of road traffic and background events was still there when I photographed this scene on a winter afternoon in March 2012. The ordinariness of a run-down neighbourhood convenience store at a slack time of the day. with a few streamers hung up like a colourful marquee. I didn’t see any of the people in the picture, not then nor until after I decided to make the tapestry, didn’t think there might be something going on among some including an army picket, with others listening or trying to mind their own business. It happens sometimes, in the time it takes to weave a tapestry, that my understanding of parts of it changes.
The colourful streamers are a packaging innovation, strings of foil packets of snacks, sold for 5 or 10 rupees apiece. I had a habit of buying them from a friendly kiosk on the boardwalk to my hotel, so they belong in my nostalgia trip, and a reminder that things have a way of getting old before you know it.


~ by Peter Harris on 21/06/2019.

One Response to “Srinagar waterside”

  1. Hi Peter. So nice to see an entry again with your beautiful new tapestry. I hope you are well. Many greetings from Marja

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