The tour organizers I went with did a fabulous job of finding interesting places to visit on our trip to India. One of the places we went to was a a local marble/gem manufacturer. We saw how gems are cut and polished by hand, an incredible process. Our workers at this plant all seemed to be young men.
They cut and polish emeralds, sapphires, rubies, lapis lazuli, turquoise, corals, garnets, amethysts, and topaz before these pieces can be inserted into marble inlay boxes and other items. Each of these marble inlay boxes is hand made and then adorned with these semi-precious stones. The process is painstaking with each stone, no matter how small, being individually placed. The value of the completed piece depends on the number of semi-precious stones inlaid.
Later these items are sold in the handicraft markets that seem to spring up in every city. Its definitely worthwhile to see this process if you’re offered the opportunity, and to purchase a piece to bring home. I bought two pieces and use them daily. Most also offer international delivery if you need it.
If you’ve always wanted to go to India but none of your friends want to go I suggest you look up the travel company that I went with. An extremely professional group who took everything into account. From our lack of native language skills, to cultural differences, accommodation and welfare, I felt totally at ease with how they handled the trip and will definitely go with them again. Trish McConville was our tour leader and a fabulous job she did. The company website is http://www.adventuresforsinglesinc.com
I say go for it. If you’ve ever dreamed about this country, its all you’ve dreamed and more…