Kullarh Earthen Cups

Submitted by lmcshane on Sun, 02/01/2009 - 11:29.

Are the clay tea cups used in India GREEN?

Today, in a minor BFD skirmish, I wondered about the story told to me years ago by an acquaintance, who lived in India. She had visited India in her childhood and later in life. She was saddened that the clay glasses/cups used on the trains to serve tea and chai had been replaced with plastic cups. I remember her relating the joy she felt as a child, when after drinking her tea, she would throw the cup down and grind it into pieces with her foot. Dust to dust. Sounds like a sustainable practice to me. I found this one recollection.

http://prachi-pratap.sulekha.com/blog/post/2004/09/a-kulhar-of-tea.htm

This all comes to me as I bundle "recyclables" on my day off from work. How I wish I didn't have to spend my time managing containers.

 

BTW, the shovel shown here was remarkably effective.  Since I have have the upper body strength of a ten-year old, I was able to shovel for two hours with very little physical pain.  The shovel manufactured with recycled plastic (1) was fabrique en Canada by Integrated Plastics, which has sadly since gone bankrupt.  Too bad.  It's a good design.  The injection-molded handle and stick are reinforced with criss-crossing supports to avoid twisting.  

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Perhaps they might be green

Perhaps they might be green compared to some of the non-efficientness and waste of disposables. However anything ceramic would have a hard time earning a green reputation. In addition to the firing process that might be by gas, wood or electricity all of the material creating the clay is mined and almost always that is done on terms that are adversly environmental and terribly harmful to everyone's health. The only thing you can do to reclaim it's value as cerramic is to reuse it at least a couple of hundred times...then it is a possible blessing.

Ten steps back

  The Kuhlar debate in India makes me think of how America took ten steps backwards when as a country we dismantled a public transportation system in favor of the personal automobile.

BTW, I don't think that the kuhlars are fired, hence the mud taste...can anyone elaborate on the history of kuhlars?

They are low fired

They are low fired, here is another pretty article:

http://trostomaten.blogspot.com/2008/02/earthen-vessels-in-city-of-joy.h...

 

Chai

  I love chai and my personal recommendation for the best chai in NEO?  Algebra tea house on Murray Hill in Little Italy.  The owner is a potter and clay artist.  I need to ask him about these cups!!


alegbra

"Ask him about the cups," as in -- to buy them?

Ayman usually puts a lot of his unique wares out for sidewalk sale during warmer months -- I think during Little Italy art-walks or festivals. You could probably ask whenever, though.

Yes, Algebra is great... I spent most of a day there last week doing work, (after leaving the incredible Edie next door at Art Etc with a piece of artwork to frame.)

Later in the evening, a group that meets every Friday to study Rumi's poetry politely commandeered my table -- but there are so many comfy places to sit, I was happy to have a reason to use another...

There's a nice wood stove in there. Usually with orange peels atop, or a pan roasting coffee beans...

The Stove

Nice reminder that Algebra is a place to go to physically and mentally warm up.  Zeleznick's in the valley has a great wood stove, too.  And a pool table.  And beer and TV...I would have stopped in there yesterday after my post-artic trek to Steelyard for rechargeable batteries, but I wasn't ready for the superbowl crowd.