Baubles and Bangles


"…I haven’t done justice to the Afghan pendant. It’s large, about the size of my
two hands held together, palm up. An Afghan refugee woman in Pakistan must have
sold it, along with the pair of bracelets just above it, two a shopkeeper in
Karachi, where I bought them. They are mixed alloys of brass, and perhaps steel
— they have varied tints of gold and silver. The red insets are not stones, but
lac. I don’t really feel that I can carry off such a dramatic pendant, though I
love it, so I use it to hold down the papers in my filing basket.

silver bracelet on the right was given to me by a friend from Sargodha, Pakistan.
She told me that the style, which has small horn-like projections on both sides
of the opening, is peculiar to Sargodha. Two of the remaining three are very
ordinary, cheap, with little actual silver in them. The remaining one is in the
style of the Todas, a tribe of the south Indian hills, who believe (wrongly)
that they are descended from the soldiers of Alexander the Great."

Nancy Gandhi
Under the Fire Star

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