Hey,this photo is © Harnam Singh

The legacy of the golden Year



In the cold winds of a village in North India, living out the golden years of life is a pleasure. The pure water that flows through the mountains and the crisp air keep worry and sickness at bay. Though their skin may be wrinkled and arms thin, the elderly of Himachal Pradesh look after themselves with agility that can put anyone in their youth to shame. Their sparkling eyes tell stories of many seasons gone and many that are yet to come.

This series follows the lives of ‘Bulandi Devi’ of 103 years old, a man ‘Laxman Das’ of 97 years old, ‘Revtu Ram’ of 109 Years old, ‘Bahadur singh’ of 94 years old, ‘Bhagat ram’ of 76 years old, ‘Lata devi’ of 86 years old and ‘Sarla devi’ of 82 years old. They stand witness to the fact that old age doesn’t have to be a burden, lived off the comfort of someone else’s shoulders. Their days are just like anyone’s – filled with energy and activity. Their zest for life and will power belies the fact that they are all aged between 95 to 110 years of age. In a world where the elderly are plagued by sickness and misery, do they know something that we do not?
The secret is simple. They live in a pure, untainted habitat in mountains of Himachal Pradesh. Their whole lives have been spent away from the grime, dust and worry of city life. Their nurture has always come from the earth, never from a factory-made packet. The serene villages and mountains of Himachal Pradesh offer more than beautiful landscapes and holiday getaways. These places hold the key to a fulfilled life, one that we city dwellers all desire but that always seems out of reach. We can learn truly to switch off the machines and connect with the very earth that we are made of. Pure, simple, and elemental. That is key to living a long, healthy and peaceful existence.