Merry Christmas

“However mean your life is, meet it and live it; do not shun it and call it hard names. It is not so bad as you are. It looks poorest when you are richest. The fault-finder will find faults even in paradise. Love your life, poor as it is. You may perhaps have some pleasant, thrilling, glorious hours, even in a poorhouse. The setting sun is reflected from the windows of the almshouse as brightly as from the rich man’s abode; the snow melts before its door as early in the spring. I do not see but a quiet mind may live as contentedly there, and have as cheering thoughts, as in a palace.” ~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden

Web Preparedfishman (Large)

Early Bird Catches the Worm: Early one morning, before sunrise, I arranged for my tuk-tuk taxi man to fetch me. We shot some sunrise photos on the edge of the lake and it was then time to explore some of the narrow alleys on the edge of the lake / waterway.

The fisherman below had no doubt woken up a short while before me and had already retrieved his catch of small fish from his net. I met him in an alley that heads to the main road.

About 30 min before I had met another local who, like the fisherman, was also a smoker. I thought it would be a done deal; offer him a few packets of Beedi (thin, Indian cigarette filled with tobacco flake and wrapped in a tendu or possibly even Piliostigma racemosum leaf tied with a string at one end) and then he would allow me to take photos of him.

The fisherman declined the Beedi deal but through the translator explained that some Rupees (cash) to buy a 07:30 refresher in the morning from the toddy shop (coconut wine / beer) would seal the deal!

Wikipedia: “Palm wine is an alcoholic beverage created from the sap of various species of palm tree such as the palmyra, date palms, and coconut palms.

In Karnataka, India, palm wine is usually available at toddy shops (known as Kallu Kadai in [Tamil], Kalitha Gadang in Tulu, Kallu Dukanam in Telugu, Kallu Angadi in Kannada or “Liquor Shop” in English).

In the Indian state of Kerala, toddy is used in leavening (as a substitute for yeast) a local form of hopper called the “Vellayappam”.

Toddy is mixed with rice dough and left over night to aid in fermentation and expansion of the dough causing the dough to rise overnight, making the bread soft when prepared.

In Kerala, toddy is sold under a licence issued by the excise department and it is an industry having more than 50,000 employees with a welfare board under the labour department”.

Canon 6D, F4, 1/400 sec, ISO 640, NL – 24/105mm L

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