If you’ve been following this blog you know how much I’m digging on India these days. I’ve rented all the Bollywood movies available on Netflix, bought a few CDs to craft to and even got a beautiful henna tattoo on my hand this past weekend.

Perfect timing to make an Indian-inspired project for my craft column, don’t you think? I have a horrible cold but that couldn’t stop me from pulling together something fabulous. I have a bag of batik fabric scraps that I’ve been dying to use on something and recently I picked up some oversized nice hardcover blank journals on clearnace at Borders.

Destiny!

I totally went to town in my studio and embellished the books with a vibrant fabric collage of the scraps. I trimmed them in shiny silver trim and adorned them with tiny sequins and mini beads. It was a visual treasure to behold.

I improvised a sexy Bombay shimmy while I showed it to Patrick.

“Doesn’t this look like I bought it at an Indian flea market?” I said in a singing tone through my muffled virus-ridden voice.

“Hmmm….No….It kinda looks… Indonesian,” he replied. “But it’s really cool, honey – go with it!”

What does he know about India anyway? I never see him sitting through four hours of Asian melodrama and song, reading subtitles on these glorious imported films. Sure he soaks up the History Channel, but I know my stuff. I was so happy and I wasn’t going to let his critical thinking comment burst my bubble.

I could hardly fall alseep because I was so excited to go into work and type up my column. In my intro I would share great Bollywood movies to rent like Lagaan and music to listen to, like the soundtrack to Bend it Like Beckham. *Note: I was so achey with this cold, I’ll add links later – promise* Yah, that’s the ticket! The 500,000 readers of the paper would all celebrate by eating Gulab Jaman (milk balls in syrup) while making this nifty batik collage journal. “It feels so good to spread world peace and harmony,” I told myself as I slipped into my feverish, medicated slumber.

I got into work this morning, was not quite as loopy for lack of cold medicine – and wrote my wonderful, inspiring intro. It wasn’t quite a bountiful as I had outlined in bed last night, but it came pretty close. Before I filed it in the system for my boss to edit, Patrick’s know-it-all Indonesia comment popped in my head. “Google, here I come,” I thought.

Sure enough Indonesia kept appearing on my searches of batik.

“Um, is Indonesia close to India?”, I asked out loud to anyone who happened to be around. “Please say yes.”

I knew the answer. But I had to hear it from someone else.

“Ha! No Kathy,” said my friend Mike who listens to prog rock 24/7. “You don’t know that? Come on now!”

I went to one of the copy desk editors, Marcia, and asked her about it. She knew the answer too, but was so sweet that she did a fact check just to make sure. Then with a deadpan tone she ordered me to go change my copy. Otherwise our readers would surely lynch me via nasty emails or send bad vibes my way by making fun of me over their morning coffee. Hello Indonesia!

I returned to my desk. My energy level had plummeted faster than the searing pain of a drop of hot glue on soft skin. I was the Jessica Simpson of international crafts.

Yes. Yes. Yes. I know very well that Indian fabrics are all about shiny saris and gold trimmed silk. I think my cold and all the medicine I took launched me into another universe where India and Indonesia are one in the same.

So it looks like that India-inspired project is still to come. In the meantime, the world will have to deal with my “Indonesian”-inspired journal.

Hey, it’s all about world unity, right?

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* All content/photos copyright, © Kathy Cano-Murillo, 2008.

Love & light,