By Poonam Shukla and Shikha Bohra, interns of HET
We headed for Pekhari two days after the first meeting. We took Stephan Anna and two fellow interns(new ones) with us. Till then, we knew Durga didi and a few other women of the Kulthi village may meet us in the afternoon.
After a 45minute drive (thanks to Stephan Anna), we reached Pekhri to find nobody there. We had called a few minutes ago and the lady had said she will try to call the others in sometime, so we waited. And we waited.
After losing our patience, we decided to go find them ourselves.Since the only activity in the village was from the school, we went there to ask the teachers for the addresses. Then we ran around and got one woman-Vijaylaxmi- from the last meeting to come to the venue. None of the activities we had planned were going to happen. We spoke to her nonetheless and confirmed a new idea about the bags that had been brewing in our mind. During this conversation, we got a call. The call was from the other village, Kulthi that the women were waiting. After wrapping up our conversation with Vijaylaxmi didi, we rushed to Kulthi and found around eight women eagerly awaiting us. It was like a fresh sunshine.
We got straight to business. After a round of somewhat interesting introductions, a healthy discussion about the functioning and timings ensued. These were women who had a lot on their hands. They loved the idea of coming together to create something, independently. We got good vibes here.
Eventually, we came to consensus that we could start working on soaps and balms out of the natural oils they have access to from their surroundings (and add a few others).
They promised to come down to the office in Gushaini the very next day. They seemed excited to start training. We wrapped the highs in the low and the lows in the high for the day and headed back. Another new idea was taking shape on the way.