Monthly Archives: February 2016

Sleeping Beauty mountain, Joshimath, India

Our home is ideally situated to view a range of mountains. Each of them has a special configuration and hence a name that fits. One of the fascinating names is that of the Sleeping Beauty, which actually resembles a lady’s profile while reclining. No wonder I get up early in our Himalayan home, wouldn’t you, if such a view awaited you?

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Vishnuprayag -Himalayas, India

Yet another breathtaking confluence of two rivers can be seen at Vishnuprayag. The Alaknanda River joins the Dhauliganga here. It is believed to be the place where the Sage Narada meditated, Lord Vishnu appeared before him at this site. It is definitely a place worth meditating in. One does not have to try, the surroundings allow one to look deep within oneself and attain an inner peace that comes at such places. Is it the rarefied atmosphere? is it the beauty of this magical place? Why should we analyse it as long as it gives us joy….

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Travel light -Samsonite Firelight Spinner

With the restriction on baggage on all Indian domestic airlines (15 kgs), one has to think outside the box…or get a new box! Our family decided to study the best lightweight bags in the world and bought the one ranked fourth. This is the shiny, desirable Samsonite firelight spinner that is a boon when it comes to it’s weight, looks and sturdiness. The handbag weighs less than a bottle of water. For extra care, add a ‘fragile’ sticker on your bag. In life we carry a lot of baggage, why pay through your nose to carry it on a flight? Travel light when you take flight……………..and put your non-essential items in your spouse’s bag. Some airlines are weighing the handbag too……….

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Slaty headed Himalayan parakeet

The last day I was in the mountains, as I have said earlier, the birds I gaze at gave me a glorious farewell by flying over me. New to my ever expanding list of feathery friends were the slaty headed Himalayan parrots. I saw them and enjoyed watching them for the first time…..hopefully, this will not be the last time…….

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The little beings

Said the sparrow, “these humans admire the bright, the shiny and the colourful birds. I am special to those of my tribe and those who know me. I serve my purpose in the ecosystem and help to maintain it.” 

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S-treaking?

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Halo

As I prepare to leave the Himalayas yet again, I take a deep breath and try to absorb and capture the beauty of the mountains all around me….not with my camera, but with my heart and brain. Suddenly an arc of different colours appeared above me, above the morning sun!! I do not care if it is technically due to diffraction of light or refraction of light, it’s a rainbow to me. I grab my camera and take a picture. Just then, there are sounds of fluttering of wings and bird sounds. A green woodpecker, 4 blue magpies and over a dozen parrots appear out of nowhere and fly from one tree to another, leading me up the 150 steps to the top….a delightful goodbye from all things beautiful which make it much harder to leave….

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Our Gooseberry tree

Gooseberries are full of vitamins and antioxidants. The value of any fruit or vegetable is multiplied a million times if it grows in your own home and you can pluck it and use it straight away. We have a gooseberry tree that not only gives us extremely sour and healthy gooseberries but also attracts a lot of birds which are a pleasure to watch. The most beautiful birds our garden attracts are, without a contest, the peacocks which are beyond magnificent and totally unafraid of us…..see if you can spot the few gooseberries on our tree which we have not yet plucked, and the collared dove perched on it…

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Starling- London

We saw the iridescent starlings for th first time in the Kensington gardens in London. They were among a group of birds that were being fed by humans like us. The colors on their bodies sparkled and glinted in the sunlight…IMG_9737 - Copy - CopyIMG_9737 - Copy


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Bears eat berries

We had a nocturnal visit from a bear a few days ago….it ripped apart some sofa cushions in the gazebo and flung them around the grass in the lawn. The bears have  path they follow which runs near our home. They get leftover meat thrown out from a common dining area. Surprisingly, they are largely vegetarian and survive on plants and berries for the most part. They are particularly fond of tiny red berries found in high altitude areas….of course the honey in our home must be a major attraction for them..

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