State of Nostalgia: Assam

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Mridusmita and Papori share their memories of Assam

The malty aroma from the cuppa in my hand takes me down the muddy laneway of my memories, memories that I carry in my chest since the day I left home, circa 2000. In my mind’s eye, I could see myself travel back in time through those endless paddy fields, by the mighty Brahmaputra, through the gently rolling slopes of the tea gardens, traversing the thick bushes of the Kaziranga, spotting a rhino or two, up to the little oil town of Digboi, the place I was born.

I could see those Bihu dancers and the hunky Dhulias dancing away in perfect harmony. I lose myself in the sea of humanity making their way to see Maa Kamakhya during Ambubashi mela. Suddenly, the phone lying next to me springs to life and I wake up in attention. “Hey! What’s up?” the voice at the other end tells me. “We are coming to Melbourne next week. Is there anything you want from home?” With a smile I say, “Yes please, a packet of the strongest and the finest quality Assam tea!”

Mridusmita Haloi Instructional Designer (Melbourne)

Writer: Mridusmita (Assam)
Writer: Mridusmita (Assam)

Assam, located in the north eastern part of India, is renowned for its natural beauty and rich cultural heritage. It is rich in natural resources and has the oldest petroleum refinery in Asia. When people think of Assam, one thing comes to mind, the distinct flavour of the world famous Assam Tea! Most Assam tea is now blended and sold in supermarkets in popular blends like English Breakfast, Irish Breakfast and Black Tea.

One horned rhinoceros- Assam
One horned rhinoceros- Assam

Assam is also the home of the famed but endangered one horned rhino in the world famous Kaziranga National Park. Sitting beneath all these is the vivid cultural thread of Assam, shaped by Satriya and the heartbeat of Assamese Bihu Dance.

Papori Barua Research/yeast and brewing consultant (Perth)

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