Our Road Trip for Water is Completed.
Wow.. we did it .. Two thousand one hundred and ninety Kilometres in our little Maruti Omni van!
Are we crazy? Probably! Did we have fun?.. absolutely! Did we learn stuff?.. most certainly. Did we make a difference? We think so.
We drove and laughed and played silly games – the ongoing joke became – “don’t mention the road – don’t say ‘wow its good here’.. because that will immediately create massive holes and rough terrible bits!!”
We stayed in lodges – we trudged through muddy rice paddies to inspect the bore well recharge systems – slipping and sliding and holding my camera carefully above the splashes. We walked a lot, spoke to many farmers, and did lots of filming so we can share the stories here.
The farmers were great – enthusiastic – pleased we came to see them – ready to tell their stories without hesitation in a muddling mix of languages – Kannada – here in Karnataka, Marathi and mixed Hindi in Maharasthra – and Telugu – English – Hindi in Telangana. It will be challenging sorting the videos and getting the translations done.. urgent work this week.
The main thread of our journey was the people – everywhere we went – were people happy to speak with us – interested in what we were doing .. keen to find out how they too could recharge their often dried up bore wells.
I would get up in the morning sometimes wondering just how I would make it through yet another day on the long road and then the first farmer would tell his story and the energy would shift and once again I would know exactly why we were doing this trip. Even the last two days when the dust and some bug leapt on me and the coughing and spluttering got in the way of things – the journey was worth it over and over.
What did we learn? Well number one we learnt that a better form of transport will be absolutely fabulous!! Neither of us would recommend more than 2000 kms in an Omni to anyone! So if you would like to help us on the the crowd funder is still going on here.
We also learnt that the next time we go we will prepare better. This time the idea hit me and within a week we were on the road. We didn’t have a lot of time to organise. Next time we will do more farmer meetings – and use the time more efficiently.
We learnt a lot about what sort of documentation we need to prepare for both promotional things and for the actual sign ups when the farmers are moving into the agreement stage.
All in all it was a brilliant journey .. we think we will have to make it an annual event.. anybody like to come next time?