Ulla Zachrisson’s postcard from India

26 Feb 2015

In October 2014, Ulla Zachrisson and Bo Söderberg visited Vikrapandiam, a rural Indian village they’d sponsored two years earlier.

“We left Chennai and drove through at least 10 villages that looked like many we’d seen before outside New Delhi and around Mumbai,” said Ulla. “People sitting, standing and doing nothing. No smiles, naked children covered in dirt, waste everywhere. I suppose you’d call it apathy. And poverty, of course.

“Then we came to our village. I couldn’t have imagined in my wildest fantasy the welcome we got. They’d prepared for arrival, probably for weeks. The children were standing in their beautiful school uniforms. There was a band waiting for us with two drummers, a clarinetist and a trumpet player. There was noise all over, and they dressed us in big flower-necklaces. Everyone in the village seemed to be there, all 1,800 of them, except for a group of holy men we met later who were apparently unaware of anything: ‘Oh, what are you doing here?’”

Read Ulla’s full postcard here.