What happened when I walked the 10 steps of this exquisite tale of Dharavi? I remembered.
On a hot summer day in 1963 when I was 15 years old I strode into the shallow stream of the Ramganga in a Terai Forest in north India. The water was clear and cool.
I floated down the stream over calm pools and live rapids that rolled over the rolled stones of the blue river. For an hour and more I lived in this world of water and air, an alternate world in which I was not vertical but saw the world horizontal on my back or on my stomach.
The familiar world of trees and grasses, birds and fish grew weightless, and I saw the rare and exceptional in the familiar. This journey was anchored when I walked out of the river and sat on a rolled boulder to dry out and return to the experience of heat and normalcy.
I saw a large tiger come down to drink on the far bank of the river. He looked at me and I him. Utter ease for both. As unexpected and comforting and unique as this experience was, in retrospect I think I acted as if I was expecting the grace and beauty before me.
This sentiment born 55 years ago was awakened when I read tthe story of the kulhar, the dots of color in the green, the floating train and its intestinal journey of the birthing of a consciousness for the boy who is destined to be the potter, the maker of a little life that will find similar lives of endeavor that inhabit the stars of the wolf’s path in the night sky.
In the simple accessible words that spiral with quiet intensity into a vortex Karim presents a river that invites us to know the majesty and the magic of the humble potter’s mission of service.
— Maharaja Sriraj Jayasinhji of Halvad–Dhrangadhra