Life on Dal Lake is one of my favorite things about Kashmir. It uniquely takes place all on water. Houses are on water, stores are on water. Mosques are on water. Gardens are on water. And all transportation is over water.
The shikara, then, is essential in every family. It's what gets you from place to place.
It gets you to the store.
It gets you to the neighbor's house.
It gets you to work.
It gets the tourists to your boat.
It gets you to the shore.
And it's a marvelously slow way to travel.
There's time for thinking when you're on a shikara. Time to look around you and pay attention to something other than yourself. Time to see the world you're passing by.
Time to breath--that's rare, and that's something to savor.