The Ladies of Spiti: 3733km

“Be the kind of woman that when your feet hit the floor each morning the devil says “oh crap, she’s up!”

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I hit a low point cycling yesterday as I had eaten too much sugar and not enough real food. I felt tired and slightly sick, and had no desire to go on. Lucky for me, my afternoon got a lot better once a few local ladies in a small village I was passing through invited me for chai, then to spend the night. The women were three sisters (late twenties/early thirties) who lived with their mom, and one of the women’s child, a seven year old boy. Their husbands were drivers, meaning they were normally on the road driving tourists all around northern India. They all had children as well, but besides the one boy left, the children were at private schools in other towns. Many of the children in the area are sponsored to attend these schools with a “hostel” attached, meaning the children live there, often times starting at the young age of six. The women and their mother tended to the house and animals, and also did construction for a road work project nearby, a job which is both strenuous and tedious. They were a lovely and hospitable family, and one of the women spoke decent English which made my life a bit easier.

At night we made butter! It is hard work since only the very top layer turns into it. After we finished, they boiled some of the milk so we could enjoy it, then with the rest, they were going to make cheese.

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In the morning, two of the women asked me to do a photo shoot for them since they did not have a camera. I couldn’t have been more happy to oblige! One of the ladies wore the traditional Spiti dress, as shown here.

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Then they played dress up and put me in it as well!

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Here are a few more pictures I took for them.

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I set out again the next afternoon to cycle a bit before pitching my tent for the night.

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Though it’s only 18h30, I’m lying in my tent ready for bed. That is one of the perks of camping, you are allowed to go to sleep with the sun.

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4 thoughts on “The Ladies of Spiti: 3733km

  1. Oh, Shirine! What a delightful post! I loved the fashion shoot and the churn set up was most interesting! Thank you so much for opening up my world and you explore yours! Our Monday night Soup’s On devotional group says a protection prayer for you each week. They love hearing a snippet of your stories. Last night we told them about your dog. Is he still with you? Big hugs! Suzanne & James

    • Wow! I’m glad my stories are getting passed around! Unfortunately I left him with some of his canine friends (he would pick them up in different villages. At one point I had four dogs following me!) in a small little village where he is hopefully happy.

  2. Pingback: Home Away From Home: The Beauty of Homestays | The Wandering Nomads

  3. Pingback: Favorite Cycling Routes: Spiti Valley (Northern Indian Himalayas) | The Wandering Nomads

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