India is known to enchant visitors with unexpected sights and on this afternoon, this sight had me grabbing for my camera yet again. In front of a small guest house in rural South India, I saw a makeshift assembly line producing mattresses. With limited language skills, I think that I understood that the guest house had bed bugs, a pest, not so uncommon in my own city of New York and they were now required (by the police?) to make new ones. There are no mattress stores in this town. Mattress makers come right to the premises.
Part of their equipment includes an unusual machine that recycles the mattress stuffing. The stuffing from the old mattresses is fed through this machine. The old stuffing comes out fluffy and fresh looking.
They also come with a sewing machine and striped cotton mattress ticking. By the time I passed, all the mattress covers were sewn.
I was talking to a friend recently who was complaining about his credit card debt. He mentioned that he was almost finished paying off his new mattress and box spring which cost him $1,900.00. I’m sure he has a very fine mattress but he paid a very fine price for it too. What is the conclusion? The cost of progress is very dear, in so many ways. India helps me put so many things in perspective, sometimes with a ping of pain but mostly with a smile. I think I’ll sleep on that.