A Sense of Place
As travel opportunities gradually return, it seems a good time to think of the meaning behind the voyages we’ve been missing, and can once again enjoy. Some of us go somewhere new in search of specialty, must-taste foods or beverages; others for some rare handmade item, whether it be a fine guitar from Paracho, Mexico, or an ornate tablecloth from a tiny town in Italy, where textiles are rust-printed and stone-pressed the same way they have been for centuries. These exquisite creations—and their makers—tend to open windows into the different values and aesthetics that have long defined the world’s myriad cultures, and that distinguish them from each other. To honor these remarkable traditions, and our renewed opportunity to visit them, we offer you this collection of stories with a strong sense of place.
Nand Kishore Chaudhary has built one of India’s most successful handmade carpet ventures by forging close ties to a community that most businesses on the continent shun: the poor, largely uneducated caste of citizens long referred to as “Untouchables.” To help his business grow, he’s also had to develop an apprenticeship system around India’s chronic battles with child labor. To Chaudhary, navigating these issues is the only way to honor the true meaning of sustainability. During a visit to the Jaipur Rugs company, our correspondent tries to figure out how all these pieces come together.
By CATHRYN JAKOBSON RAMIN
While the United States and other prosperous countries have struggled to keep their honeybees alive, Greece—a country suffering from a decade of intense economic troubles—continues to produce what many consider the world’s finest honey. What’s the Greeks’ secret? And why can’t honey producers in wealthier countries keep up?
By ROB WATERS