The temptation to capture more sleepers in repose continues as I stroll through Mysore’s wholesale flower market. At every turn someone succumbs to drowsiness after an early morning of hard core selling and the ubiquitous cup of chai won’t suffice. The morning’s labor is coming to an end and the hustle-bustle of the market settles down.
I am delighted with the colors and sweet fragrance that permeates the air; a noticeable contrast to the usually pungent aromas that frequently assault the senses on a stroll in India. As usual, I am the only Westerner here and my presence garners a lot of attention. Armed with sincerity, admiration and enthusiasm, I navigate through the market to mostly smiling faces and offers of tea. Soon my presence is accepted and gratefully ignored.
At first I think that these flowers are for decoration and to be sold to florists but I quickly see that I am mistaken. They are sold by the weight to make garlands for religious rituals and adornments for their idols. If you look closely you can see the hand-held scale sitting in front of the roses, also in repose, is the tea kettle in front of the sleepers’ feet. He has earned his nap and it is time to let a sleeping man be.