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oochappan | all galleries >> INDIA Tamil Nadu >> INDIA Eyes for the true soul > Chandran, farmer of Payanur
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Chandran, farmer of Payanur
2001-03-12 oochappan

Chandran, farmer of Payanur

Mamallapuram

A typical Tamil face: a deep black skin with a slight blue-red shine.

As Chandran had some stomac problems the last years he became lean and doesn't have that strong body to work on the land anymore. So at his age of 42 he his helping out his wife, selling flowers on the market. With a cotton robe he braid the jasmin flowers into strings for ladies to wear in their hair.
Remark that dark blue spot between his eyebrows burned in the skin by the colors they put there when they go praying in the temple. And if you look straight in his eyes you can see some red spots, a sign that this man could have been causing his problems by drinking arak before. I'm not sure that's correct in his case.

But that leads us to a big problem in Tamil Nadu indeed : ARAK !
This arak is usually made with denatured alcohol to keep the price down and they mix it with cooldrinks. Drinking this causes after some time always stomac problems and affect the eye-sight.

Here Chandran exposes as he knew what I wanted: a soft smile with one eye and the misery he knew in his other. Curious how empathic those people can be. I remember his right eye best as we often sat down, laughing and sharing a cigaret.


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