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Showing posts from October, 2019

Awakening of the Paddy harvester in me on a weekend.

Awakening of the Paddy harvester in me on a weekend. BuDa Folklore, an organisation dedicated to folklore research and folk culture, based in Honnavar, Uttara Kannada region. Limited to 20 participants, the three-day workshop is open to students, working professionals and people from varied backgrounds as well. This paddy harvesting workshop is hosted by Savita Uday {one of the founding directors of BuDa Folklore} at the Buda site located in Honnavar near Gokarna in the Uttara Kannada region. The paddy harvesting season happens during mid-August.  More than just an activity, the event focuses on letting you bond with the others in the group, creating some special memories and sharing stories, and all this while you are busy harvesting paddy from the stream fed fields. Come lunchtime, you might also get to experience a spot of community cooking with your new-found friends. Team ILK was lucky to experience the paddy harvesting workshop that was conducted by BudaFolklore in Augus

A tribute to Agumbe

Fig 1: Lion-tailed macaque Imagine yourself sipping a cup of coffee (or tea if you don’t like coffee) sitting on a wooden log in a thick rainforest, counting the number of Malabar Giant squirrels and an outburst of chirping by a group of birds near you with occasional sights of flying lizards (Draco). If you are puzzled by the names, do not panic. I was as clueless about Draco as you are now! Seems like a distant dream in the rainforests of Amazon, right? No, you are wrong, it’s an eight-hour bus journey from Bangalore to Agumbe Rainforest Research Station (ARRS) along the western ghats,  founded in 2005, by a leading Indian Herpetologist Romulus Whitaker. Whitaker saw his very first king cobra here in 1971 (Thanks Wiki!). As a kid, I used to pass by Agumbe several times during summer vacation to meet my grandmother, without understanding the ecological importance it holds. The place where Malgudi days was shot was the only place which amazed me in Agumbe, the ghats however gav

Mentoring: A Symphony of Multilayered Handholding

Think back to the last time you knelt on the ground and looked into the eyes of a child. This metaphorical “leveling of the playing field” is a simple yet profound act. It seems to say “In this moment, I am you, and you are me.” In several years of mentoring, I have found that my experiences have been quite similar to making eye contact with a child - you don’t know what to expect, but what you find is quite magical. I have been blessed to shimmy into this special space of mentoring through the course of my professional and personal experiences. My world has been pried open just a bit more with each handshake, each hug and each breakthrough. In the startup and social enterprise spaces, mentoring is almost accorded a box-office “Bright Lights of Broadway” special place, and yet the narrative is devoid of the bones and substance that such a relationship deserves. Be it the few-hours old corner-garage incubator, or the large conglomerate impact investor, “mentoring” is almost lik