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The Secret of Papier-mâché Painting in the Cold

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Sajad's Kangir surrounded by his work
So here now is the secret of how Sajad keeps right on with his papier-mâché painting in the cold winters of Kashmir. This is a picture of his own kangir with his products all around.
I do not know his source for this little write up but we are glad to share it.

“In a typical koshur household, the kangir continues to be the main, inexpensive source of keeping an individual warm during the winter months. A kangir is made up of two parts. The outer part is an encasement of wicker. Inside, there is an earthen bowl-shaped pot called a kondul. The kondul is filled with tsini (charcoal) and embers. A medium sized kangir holds about a pound of tsini, and its fire lasts for over six hours. Many Kashmiris fill a kangir with toh (chaff) or (guh') lobar (dry cowdung). A kangir is a constant companion of Kashmiris during the winter months. It is normally kept inside the Kashmiri cloak, the ph'aran, or inside a blanket if the person does not wear a ph'aran. If a person is wearing a jacket, it may be used as a hand-warmer.”

As a foot note, we heard yesterday that the airport was closed holding up a shipment of Easter bunnies he has been making for export through MESH. He also said that when the roads are open he will send me a little kangir …how nice!
Sajad Ali of Care Kashmir at work in the cold!


Jacky Bonney 17.1.2012