First the earth had to be prepared, the rice planted in a nursery field and nurtured until robust young seedlings heralded forth with Pachamamma’s superlative expression of self-confidence. Pacha happens to denote the colour green in Tamil – another nice touch for this blog!
There are huge machines for harvesting clunking along highways and back roads with motor-bikes strapped to the sides like insects caught in a web – men’s tools for men’s work; but there are no machines for this work; it has to be done by the hands of women. There’s something very reassuring about this.
The men take it on themselves to count the seedlings grouped into bundles and the women to plant small groups of a few seedlings in the mud below water level.
In the old Sangam poetry the tradition was for men to do all fieldwork however here, now, practices have changed.
This evening I notice there remains quite a sizeable field of paddy seedlings as yet planted, and several fields not yet prepared.
In the coming month before I leave for my native place, the progress of these beautiful fields will be recorded.
Looks the ScareCrow is active.