A DATE WITH TRIBES OF A RIVER ISLAND, MAJULI

Before I get late I MUST JUMP IN ! I have been so busy for last two weeks, too many social appearances have drained me out. Finding time to blog became almost like a challenge. I barely wrote few posts just to be there but I am happy about the fact that I could manage to do my weekly features. This post is in response to Serendipity Photo Prompt: Vacation

Tarun is out of station and I am missing him badly. He had left 10 days ago on official tour but it seems as if he has not been around for so many months. I always feel so whenever he is away. My days are boring without him. No fun, no spice, no arguments and moreover no traveling. Since we were on vacation last month and I shared few pics of Mumbai and other places recently. Let me share a very unusual and unique experience I had during one of the vacation. 

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We were on a trip to Assam. One fine day we decided to visit the largest river island of India, MAJULI. It is a cultural capital and cradle of Assamese civilization for past 500 years. We reached Guhawati, the capital of Assam, drove down to a town called Jorhat and from there took a ferry ride in Brahmaputra, the lifeline of north east India.

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starting point for ferry ride

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The journey was about two hours, it was soul soothing and exciting, though we were flowing in the river but it was mighty and giving the feel of an ocean. DSC06450From the distance the island looked beautiful with golden harvest. It is known as wetland of Mising tribes. The island was formed due to course changes by Brahmaputra and its tributaries, mainly the Lohit.DSC06314

The moment we entered in the most beautiful surroundings of Majuli we were in admiration. The oneness with the nature could be felt everywhere.

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bamboo houses erected on stilts
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a cotton bedsheet in weaving process

Majuli is an abode of the Assamese neo-vaisnavite culture. The tribes are friendly. Main occupation is agriculture with paddy being the chief crop. Handloom is second industry for distaffs. Pottery, weaving, fishing, dairying and boat making are some other options to earn bread. Butter ? not sure.

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Rice is being fermented for making rice beer

The island has a rich and diverse  agricultural tradition with as many as hundred different varieties of rice grown. They grow a kind of sticky brown rice which is used to make rice pan cakes called ‘Pitha’. They are expert in rice fermentation, the rice beer made by tribals is refreshing and light to consume, good for digestion.DSC06375

We had glasses full of home made rice beer. It tasted so good but the only sad part was we couldn’t carry it with us since it would have got bad due to bumpy ride.

I loved the tribal touch ! Though this place is also famous for the vaishnava satras ( centre of education and cultural significance) but that was one part of sight seeing. I enjoyed spreading grains under the sun, removing dry peel from garlic bulbs or to just roam around the place to soak in the fun. It was a perfect date with Majuli people !!!DSC06373DSC06370

In my next post about Majuli I will share some pics of satras, a religious creed and set up to keep utensils, weapons and other items of local handicrafts.

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6 Responses

  1. I like the houses up on stilts. Is that due to periodic flooding? Or to keep the snakes and bugs out? Looks like a fascinating experience. Too bad you couldn’t bring some of the rice beer home with you. You get to travel to some really interesting places … not just the usual tourist haunts.

    The ferry looked a little bit overloaded!!

    1. Bit overloaded? We were almost jumped out of it but were told that it was a daily affair and the load was just right. lol….. Since it rains heavily over there so to avoid water logging and flooding. Bugs and snakes are also kept at bay. Thanks for the quickest and kind feedback. I love playing for the prompt.

  2. I am happy to hear about all those fun activities and I am always happy to be social and busy. Hope you are able to take a breath and relax. xo

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