As the monsoon arrives, here in the hills, the temperature starts dropping. I look towards south from the summit of Observatory Hill, where the Indian plains, over the tiny hills are spread across. Over there, people are suffering from the high humidity, even during the monsoon months, but here in the hills we have started wearing half sweaters or sleeveless light jackets. Day or night, the entire landscape is under the veil of mist. Everything is moist or wet, sometimes soaking wet. Puddles on the roads, drops of water falling from the cedar trees, rain drops left on the handrails. The drizzle makes lovely sound when the drops fall on my umbrella.
The snake plant begins to raise its hood. Its tongue starts appearing through the hood and among the other flora it rises high and declares the beginning of the rainy season. The hillsides turn greener and get thick cover of a variety of flora. The overgrowth sometimes overpowers the sides of the roads and leaves very little space for the passers-by.
Everything is engulfed by the mist and makes it mysterious. Many a time the mist forms a cyclorama behind the ridge and different trees appearing against is, collectively, form a dramatic scenery. Suddenly the mist starts dispersing and another landscape appears from its veil. And when the night comes, the mist thins and the tiny bulbs on the hill slopes behind it create a dream world. Trees in dark with the exciting lights, the whole atmosphere appear like a fairy land. Furthermore, if the moon appears from behind the mountain top, it adds some more pleasure.
After a delightful walk I return home.
Monsoon Friends from the Forest
After a delightful walk, mostly around Elysium Hill, I return home and stand in my balcony to enjoy lovely view of another sunset. Every day it is different and during the monsoon, the formation of clouds is just phenomenal when sun hides behind them the sunrays form a shining boarder around clouds. The mist rises from the valley and disappears quickly. I feel like steeling every moment of this view but every second the transformations keep going and finally it dissolves into dusk, followed by dark.
I look down to the bridal path where ‘Shadow’ – the pet dog of my landlord is just finishing his evening stroll with his master. Both, the old man and the dog are heading towards their house. It is going to rain again. I close the door of my balcony and come inside to switch on the lights of my house. Another day of life has gone.
Soon my window pan is hit by someone. Who is attracted to the light and is trying to enter my room. Oh! these are some friends from the nearby forest who start appearing during this weather. Beetles, moths, bugs, crickets, spiders and even centipedes begin to appear. The moisture begins to enter the atmosphere and moths and beetles can be see buzzing around the street bulbs. Also they are attracted to the light coming through the window-pans of my house. When they are stuck to the glass of the window, it is nice to look at their several limbs all spreading around in all directions. How to they co-operate with each other to carry the body of the insect. Additionally, they also have wings to fly.
Where do they go to otherwise, I don’t know? But as the clouds start appearing these friends also come along. In this atmosphere, with a glass of wine in my hand, it is so mesmeric to watch them. They are just looking for a chance to open the door and enter my room. Some of them make their way in through a broken window glass or through a slit under the door. But they cannot spend more with me. Soon they settle down and stick to the ceiling or the walls.
Nature is amazing. Just with mist and the hilly terrain, it creates so much of excitement. A nature writer has a power in his words to explain the splendour of nature. I promise to make you feel it through my stories but to see it physically you have to come with me to a certain place from where I can show you all this. I am sure you would see some of the most exciting natural decors and that brings a stillness to your eyes and mind.
To enjoy all that, apart from being a nature lover you also have to be a keen walker, because where you can go on foot, your most modern vehicles can never take you there. Walk with me to the unknown places and believe me, a visual delight waits for you.