Labour is a huge problem in this coffee growing area, but thanks to helpful neighbours, work somehow gets done in the midst of all the chaos. The mines in Bellary had taken away a lot of the workforce that otherwise would be begging for work at the doorsteps of every coffee planter in the region. No more… The mining may have temporarily stopped but the labour problem persists.
Our meagre workforce of 18 is not enough to hasten the picking, however a neighbour, who still remains grateful to my grandparents for helping them out in their time of need, calls up dad and assures that he would share some of the labour coming his way. Whew! That takes a load off us and I then realise the saying that the virtues or the sins of the parents will always be passed down. In this case it is the virtue of my grandparents, who’s goodwill in earlier times was looked upon as an act of weakness, but is now paying rich dividends in the respect they have left behind for the family.
Meeting the neighbour (an old Setty family) at his place to discuss about the labour issue, we came across a photo of Grandpa prominently placed in their living room. Grandpa’s help that was rendered to their father, and in turn their estate and family, is still remembered and hence the strong sense of goodwill has been carried forward. Thank you Abba and Mai (grandpa and Grandma in Konkani for the uninitiated).