Watching old style production

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We head out from the hotel to a nearby monastery where we would like to see the local holy place – apparently the nuns also do some sales of local production of the monastery like jam, honey and cheese. But when we arrive at the door of the monastery there is nobody in sight and no stand or shop anywhere where they sell the local products. So we quickly have to give up on a tour of the monastery and any shopping.

Instead we head to a little shop where they sell woodcarving products. Out in the back they have a small workshop where they do some of the production for the shop. An old man is sitting in a little room where he makes small wooden plaques where he has cut holes in the tree wood and put wood of different colours inside.

When he is making his wooden plaques he is using a little machine which he apparently has built himself. It is a little piece of metal with a wire to cut the tree – he is cutting the tree by moving the wire up and down with a pedal and the help of a spring pulling the wire back up. It takes a while to cut a small heart out of the tree and then cut other tree in different colour to put it inside. He has to open and close the wire to actually do the cutting of a hole in the tree. After a while he finally makes the heart and gives it to us. In return we give a small donation and he seems pretty happy.

We head inside the shop to see what they have for sale. The goods are nice – but when we see the prices we quickly leave the shop again. You don’t really get the impression these goods are made by people who probably only make a couple of dollars a day.

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