Monday, August 20, 2012

A brother named Baba, Humana People to People, Rajasthan, India, November 14, 2009

On this cloudy day we were forced to make portraits in a different manner. We arranged a bench in the front courtyard of the teacher's home, also the school for the neighborhood girls sponsored by Humana People to People in India. The entrance to the courtyard is to the left, and to the right is an open space just above the red, stone wall.

One by one the men sat on the bench for their pictures. For the most part their expressions were serious, every now and then breaking into a smile. This gentle man however was the exception, always in the mood for humor and leading the way as an example for the children all around us.

One would never know it by his demeanor in public, but he lives a most difficult life. He works incredibly hard for the foundation, and was the main person in charge of our collaborative efforts throughout my time in Rajasthan. He was always on time, and beyond dependable. He communicated to me without reservation even though his english skills were most basic. He was never afraid to use the wrong word, because he knew that his thoughts would translate in a most genuine manner regardless.

I should and will learn to speak his language, in light of the obvious fact that I am in his neighborhood.

During my time with Baba, he took me to his land one day. We sat down for a chat, and he displayed to me the plants/trees he had placed in cooperation with Humana People to People India. These were to be used in the future as fuel, and he was proud of the collaboration. What amazed me most was his vision, for he saw into the future when so many around him were understandably focused on the present.

On the land was a most basic structure that served as his home. His wife was present inside but was unable to visit with us due to her ailing health. In front of me was this man that needed to tend to his wife, needed to take care of his land, yet worked feverishly with Humana People to People in order to better his section of the Earth.

I am most proud to call this man my brother, and to acknowledge the meaning of his name. He is a father to me in India, and will always be thought of as such.

For more of my work, please visit the newly designed website below, courtesy of Patrick Luu.

Halim Ina Photography