Showing posts from February, 2010

Birds of prey!

This post has been altered on 2nd March after a valuable feedback from another blogger. At first we, Dr. Ajay Pradhan & I believed that this bird I'd spotted is the  The Red-necked Falcon or Red-headed Merlin (Falco chicquera). However, a kind reader and fellow-blogger Thomas , whose a veteran nature enthusiast, pointed out that we were mistaken. This bird here is in fact the Shikra  (adult male) and not the Turumti! As of now I'm extremely thrilled to have spotted a bird of prey. And I have actually also been able to click a fantastic picture within its brief moment of perch. WOW!! Isn't this a price catch of sorts? " Just look at the details..the red eye..super Vibhuti!" were the words of praise from Ajay! The  Shikra or The Little Banded Goshawk ( Accipiter badius ) is a small bird of prey in the family Accipitridae, which also includes many other diurnal raptors like the eagle, buzzard and the harrier. This bird is a small raptor (26–30cm long), a

Ambush - 55 Fiction #4

They’d been crawling under the scorching sun. Elbows were grazing on the gravelly earth but they didn’t care. They’d been waiting for this chance for weeks now. This time they were prepared. Just when they were taking aim at Marty mother called, “Tommy, Joey, where are you? Lunch is ready!”

The Hungry Tide - Amitav Ghosh

A Hutch Crossword Book Award winner of 2004, 'The Hungry Tide'  tells the tale of the settlers of Sundarbans. The book is neatly divided into 2 distinct parts- The Ebb: Bhata (Part I) & The Flood: Jowar (Part II). The parts are like the first and second half of a good movie, that would leave a feeling of lacking and incompleteness without each other. The book rotates around two protagonists- Piyali Roy, the Marine Biologist from America of Bengali origins who has arrived in the Sundarbans to further her study on a specific species of cetaceans and Kanai (to be pronounced to rhyme with Hawaii) Dutt who is a Delhi based Businessman. He is also drawn in the same direction as Piya but only for personal reasons. In the first half of the book the two meet and part and meet once again while their stories are being related on parallel premises. Between the sea and the plains of Bengal, on the easternmost coast of India, lies an immense archipelago of islands. One of these

55 fiction #3

As I stared deep into her eyes she said something. Her lips curled to mouth three words animatedly. And I nodded a 'YES' vehemently. Yes, I've been deaf all my life!

R.I.P.German Bakery

Yet another black day in Indian history! Today, would have painted the town red with love but that was not on destiny's mind. The red that we are seeing is of bloodshed. 26/11 grazed Leopold's at dear old Mumbai and last eve' terror ripped one of our beloved Pune city's favourite landmark, The German Bakery. A gory, ghastly sight had replaced the usually hustling- bustling merriment. We can now only reminisce those beautiful cups of sweet tea sipped at those creaky tables. The bushy- brow, toothy smile helper bringing out the fair from its mouth-watering display like a magician opens his bag of tricks! I would greedily bite into the cheese-filled croissants and devour the pastries. It was a Saturday ritual to lug home a big bag of goodies from the bakery. Apple Crumble pie, Plum cake, Cheese cakes, Tarts and what- nots! Sometimes in boxes and sometimes in bags. I can still feel the cinnamon aroma of hot bread waft into my nostrils raking up a rumbling hunger in my

Yo Dude! Wazzup?

In the 70's the word mouthed by many at college was 'bugger' and my Pa uses it sometimes till date. In the 90's and at the beginning of this Millennium I noticed that my college-mates used a lot of  'Man' while addressing another. In this decade the 'Dude' seems to rule the roost! Used liberally at the beginning and at the end of each sentence, its very much in vogue. When a teenage friend of mine called me that, I rebelled, and aghast she goes, " Dude you're so Old World! Chic your language up dude !" I could almost feel a tuft of silver, sprout from mid-ramp at my head and lunge towards my temple. I have got to chic my language and then my wardrobe and ofcourse my hair,  like she has!   " ...But that's not you! Do you have to act like your classmates do? " I pleaded. And she rolled her eyes at me and said " Duh?!"  She wouldn't be caught dead looking like a bhenji ! The irony is that they have to drape

The Jungle Babbler

Again as identified by  Dr. Ajay Pradhan this bird my lens captured is The Jungle Babbler , Turdoides striata, a gregarious bird found mostly in South-Asia . An interesting feature about this bird is that it usually forages in a group of 6-7 birds and hence has acquired its Hindi nickname 'SaatBhai' or 7 brothers.... The Jungle babbler  is a non-migratory bird and has a harsh nasal call...Read more about the bird at Wikipedia. My observation is that its grey-brown body helps it camouflage in the urban surroundings and the trees but its noisy habit of  mewing calls, continual chattering, squeaking and chirping keeps it from being inconspicuous...

55 fiction #2

After  Swamiji’s teaching “ Learn to let go of that which you fear to lose!” Sumitra had freed her pet parrot. As the Doctor walked towards her with a grim face, she went cold all over.  Sitting outside the ICU where her mother was admitted Sumitra now fully understood the purport of Swamiji’s words!

Save the Tiger

Check out this SlideShare Presentation: Save the Tiger View more presentations from vikram_nandwani .

Celebrating Motherhood

For Sarah it felt like only yesterday that once again a Martian was born to another Venus ! Boys are a whole lot different from girls. That’s what was taught to her as a child and that she understood better only after she’d got married. So when the doc’ announced, “It’s a boy!” Sarah’s immediate reaction was of dumbfounded ambiguity. “How am I going to play my role well? Will I be able to understand him better than I understand his Pa?” However, no sooner was the little 3.3 Kgs, fair, bundle of joy in her arms that all her doubts and apprehensions about her maternal instincts went out the window. Her son nuzzled in the crook of her neck and snoozed in the cradle of her arms. That beautiful, perfectly chiseled face in deep peaceful slumber seemed to award her ‘The best place on Earth!’ title and Sarah gladly accepted it with a ‘Thank You!’ speech that mentioned GOD. “My son, my trophy!” she gloated. This was at 3 Am. - the wee hours of the last day of the 1 st month, last year. S