NaPoWriMo – Day 23

All reptile lovers, raise your hands!! I’m not – a reptile lover. They intrigue me and fascinate me but I can’t say that I love them like I do mammals. And yet – they are a formidably resilient species. They’ve survived forย millionsย of years and probably will for millions more unless we screw up their chances ย utterly and completely as we so often seem to do! I suppose too that they have their own kind of beauty – a raw, primal, savage kind of beauty that is hypnotic and unforgettable. If you have ever seen a Komodo Dragon feeding frenzy on Nat Geo – you will know exactly what I mean!!

This Rat snake seemed harmless though, and isn’t he gorgeous?! He was in a deep pit with several of his relatives in Van Vihar, a small Zoo of sorts in Bhopal. I took this on our visit there last month, as Ishaan dashed around from one pit to another in fearful excitement! The snakes were trying to climb up the pit walls and he would scream for us to run when he caught sight of one slithering silently upward, testing the air with a flick of its tongue ๐Ÿ˜€ It was rather fun watching him and watching the snakes ๐Ÿ˜‰ There was a humungous python in one pit – all coiled up and fast asleep for all I know ๐Ÿ˜› It certainly showed no signs of Life while we stared!ย 

We even saw a couple of women praying to this guy…Snakes are revered in India, since Lord Shiva uses them as accessories, you know in lieu of diamonds and such ๐Ÿ˜‰ They’re fed milk and worshiped in a special festival all their own – Nag (snake) Panchami. It’s not a festival I like coz several snakes are caught and de-fanged and exhibited by snake-charmers to the faithful multitudes, who feed them milk & pray for whatever it is they pray for! I on the contrary am inevitably reminded of Nagini, Voldemort‘s pet Basilisk (if you can call it that!) – a silent assassin, awaiting her Master’s summons and command to devour! Oooooooh…scary ๐Ÿ˜‰ If you haven’t heard of Harry Potter (which rock are you living under?!), ignore that last line ๐Ÿ˜‰

And so here is my tribute to the ‘Silent Assassin’, slithering through the night, senses attuned, fearsome hunter!

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NaPoWriMo – Day 22

As I said in my earlier post of the Day, Travel is most definitely on my mind ๐Ÿ™‚ And coming across this old lighthouse picture seemed fated! I love Lighthouses – the fact of them, the reason they exist, their inherent mystery and romanticism – standing as they do alone, where two worlds meet – land and ocean! What’s not to love?!

In Goa, on Aguada Hill, a 20 minute drive from my house, stand two lighthouses within the precincts of the Fort built by the Portuguese in 1612. The old one, the one in my picture, is a wonderful structure with loads of personality – A Grand Old Dame ofย four-storeys built way back in 1864 and the oldest of its kind in Asia, and one I love to visit ๐Ÿ™‚ She’s retired now, has been for a long while, a newer younger version exists to do the job; but her cracked, mossy walls, the shattered glass of her windows and her rusty weather-vane crown stand testament to a Life spent in unstinting, selfless service. Think of all the things she must have witnessed, all the yarns she could spin if only she could talk!

For now however she stands in somber silence, watching the world go by. I often wonder what she’s thinking!

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NaPoWriMo – Day 21

Sunrise, Sunset…it’s a given! Since I did a Sunset yesterday, I thought I would do a Sunrise today – but I don’t have any great pictures of a Sunrise (I did say I was an Owl!), I’ve settled for one of these pretty orange blossoms in the morning light. The picture brings back happy memories of our annual family vacations to a hill station, Mahabaleshwar, a few hundred kilometers from Mumbai. We gather there every year in our Indian winter (such as it is ;)), and celebrate what I like to call ‘the Art of Living’ ๐Ÿ˜‰ which for us means chilling out, pigging out, playing Pictionary late into the night, lots of alcohol, tons of laughter and gossip!!ย 

We always stay at Hotel Dina, a family owned place that serves the most delicious non-veg food ever!! We’re regulars, so the staff and owners know us and are always gracious and helpful ๐Ÿ™‚ I know all of us look forward to that hiatus in our busy lives when we reconnect with each other and Nature ๐Ÿ™‚ This picture was taken early in the morning (6.30ish methinks!), while Hubby and Junior were still sleeping and I was out with the camera to see what I could see ๐Ÿ™‚ It was cold and I was shivering (I hate warm clothes unless the cold is in danger of quite literally killing me ;)) But I remember, it was a magical morning…they always seems to be on vacation don’t they?!

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Happy Sunday People ๐Ÿ˜€

NaPoWriMo – Day 20

This photograph was taken in 2008, from a moving car (No! I was not driving!),ย en routeย to Sedona from Vegas on my second trip to the US. It was a superlative sunset and I liked the large water tank (?) that stood alone and isolated in that vast landscape. It was beautiful if a little eerie.

Dusk and twilight I must confess are my favorite times of day!I I suppose I like cusps ๐Ÿ™‚ They have a unique magical quality to them – a blending of times, that holds the promise of sweet dreams and leaves boundaries blurred…everything seems possible and probable! And because I am primarily a creature of the night, I love shadows and the dark and their inherent mystery ๐Ÿ™‚ How about you? What’s your favorite time of day and why?

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NaPoWriMo – Day 19

Unlike yesterday’s I clearly remember taking this picture! Again not a very good one – grainy from being taken in the late evening in fading light, and so had to be edited, but I digress.

This chap was sitting on the lily pad, oozing some sort of silvery, sticky fluid (which may mean he is actually a she – but your guess is as good as mine!), and generally hanging out! This is the same pond by the way, where I took this picture! We watched it for a long time and I remember Ishaan being rather fascinated with it. Frogs are not a favorite of mine – all that hopping and croaking and sudden wet flicks of the sticky tongue creep me out ๐Ÿ˜› But when they’re far enough away, I’m fine, especially when there are pictures to be taken ๐Ÿ™‚ I’m glad I found this picture, it reminded me inevitably of The Frog Prince fairy-tale and that’s what inspired the Haiku ๐Ÿ™‚

And if the Prince should turn out to be a Princess – my apologies! ๐Ÿ˜‰

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NaPoWriMo – Day 18

It is so much fun browsing old pictures! Ever so often I come across one that I cannot remember anything about – an orphaned memory of sorts! This is one such – I have no recollection of ever having taken it – although that can be oddly liberating coz now I’m free to make up any old story that takes my fancy ๐Ÿ˜›

I don’t know my plants at all! So I have no clue what this one is – but it looks to me like a seed, ready for take-off into a world fraught with air currents and insects and headed for an uncertain future. And if it seems unafraid (other than because it’s a seed I mean ;)), I guess it’s because it has no choice really does it? That’s what seeds do – they leave their mother plants and go off into Mother Nature to fulfill their destinies. I’m sure this one was no different – I wonder whether she made it (It’s altogether too pretty to be a he methinks :P)? It’s a big bad world out there and growing up is never easy to do! Probably more difficult ย for plants than humans in today’s world. And so I wish her Good Luckย on her journey – I hope she finds safe haven when she lands; and fertile ground and the right kind of sunlight and enough water. She’s a brave soul!

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NaPoWriMo – Day 17

It’s getting a little harder now to get inspired ๐Ÿ˜› Mostly because Life is getting busier as I start getting into serious vacation mode! The UK visas finally came in yesterday which means I’m all set to visit my favorite place on the Planet – London and my one and only BFF – Beenz!! Oh the Joy ๐Ÿ˜€

It also of course means a long flight with a restless 5-yr-old, his first well & truly long distance journey! Scary but exciting ๐Ÿ™‚ He’s blissfully unaware of course and unconcerned. Travel being on my mind, I came across this picture from the early days, of a water drop (not a great picture, which is why I’ve edited it significantly and hopefully made it better!), and it made me think of the Ocean. I think those of us who have grown up around water, tend to take it for granted. But this little drop got me thinking about how it got to where it was, at the end of its own unique journey. From a drop in an Ocean to a cloud in the Sky. From a raindrop in the Air to a dewdrop on a Leaf…salt water makes it’s own eternal journey!ย 

And that’s how it is for all of us in a way ain’t it? We travel – physically, emotionally, spiritually and as we do, we adapt and change as per circumstance – sometimes we are an Ocean and sometimes we are dew drops and that’s just as it should be. All we need to remember is that every Ocean has infinite dewdrops and in every dewdrop is an Ocean waiting to be discovered!

And now that I’ve got all this #$%^ about drops and oceans off my mind…let me get back to the real world, where the restless 5-yr-old dewdrop is waiting to play Cricket ๐Ÿ˜‰ ๐Ÿ˜›

Have a Happy Day People ๐Ÿ˜€ Explore your Oceans ๐Ÿ™‚

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Ooh! I just realized this is my 250th post!! YAY for me ๐Ÿ˜€