Thursday, February 19, 2009

Devala, 17 February 2009 - Day 2

This is how we started our days. On the second day, however, Gopal's back was bothering him so much he waited while I walked down to the gate and back.

Maheshwari, the cook
Blowing on the fire

The stove, with firewood stacked below. I see these stoves everywhere, including outside our house, but never saw one in use.
Maheswari grinding tomato and onion on a grinding stone, for chutney

Ramamurti, the night watchman


Carolyn, Govindharajan, Chelladurai
Govindharajan took us to the Inspection Bungalow for lunch. It is a very nice guest house for visiting inspectors and other guests. Chelladurai oversaw our lunch. It was one of the best meals we have eaten since arriving in India. So many dishes, all wonderful. Even the vegetables weren't overcooked. Heaven.

Before lunch, Sankaran, the driver, climbed a tree in the spectacular garden at the Inspection Bungalow and brought down a bumblimas (and koya and persimmon). The bumblimas looks like a large grapefruit and has a similar taste. After assistance removing the very thick, tough skins, we enjoyed eating it.There were so many beautiful flowers there. It saddened me I was not more literate in gardening. Govindharajan, Carolyn, Chelladurai, Gopal

En route to the Tantea Cherambadi Tea Factory, we passed this one - Carolyn Factory!


The stems and sticks being removed from tea leaves

Then the leaves get spread out to wilt, not dry out completely

The leaves then get chopped into tiny pieces
After filtering and oxidation, the leaf pieces are guided into large tumblers. It was here I became aware of a mist being blown onto us to keep the environment moist. You'll see in some of the pictures that my camera lense got wet.

A filtering process divides the leaves into at least six different grades.


Wood-burning ovens that roast the tea

Meeting with Sivakumar, the Divisional Manager of the factory, our guide

Trying to explain this blog to Sankar. He didn't understand a word.

A wonderful bush outside the factory


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