It was a normal start to the day for me. I left for the hills early, hiking my way up and down through the route religiously. Gave my legs a cooling lap at the stream, as I listened to the wise old and fun couple crack sense and jokes, all at the same time. The usual stalking by a few ‘newer’ mini birds and a calf (a first in a long long time!) followed before I decided to head back to the base camp (the most rewarding part of the entire pilgrimage, as well as the most time consuming one!)
And then there were the usual ‘distractions’ to detour – a few more birds and invertebrates, which would make me stray yet again (but something I never really regret). I was hooked on to once such distraction and by the time we had enough of each other, I was lying on the trail, tired and hungry. The blazing sun had worn me out and I decided to take a few minutes off before heading back, laying there to review my bounty.
That’s when these Lilliputians showed up – trumpeting their arrival with pants, scouting and securing the trail, as their master trailed behind. As cute as they could get, I couldn’t resist and snapped a photograph, without their permission. But they weren’t impressed by my act and didn’t seem to like me either. As their attack got more vicious (cute, to be honest!), I decided to get up and clear the way for them. And as they passed by, they gave me that look which very well meant’ If we wanted you dead, you’d already be dead’.
And I was like, ok…
Yet another, best of days at the hills and a fun kick-start to the day!
A lad makes a somersault while diving into the pristine waters of the Owe Lake at Kharghar.
Being able to discover the Owe Lake (for myself) after a few leads I got on a random post on Instagram and Google Maps, I finally made it to this place. It was indeed difficult for me believe that such a magical place existed just a stone throw away from such a dead concrete jungle.
P.S – Much thanks to Jibin Thomas for trusting me and lending his camera/life that day without which these pictures would never have been made, at least this way. Thanks bud!
Secondly, the lads who tried different stunts from what they were already doing, after having seen me with the ‘bada camera’. It was only because of their help (and madness) that I made some decent pictures but the best of memories!
A small fishing wharf on the creek side, next to the Kamote township amidst a misty backdrop that had taken over the area due to intense rain that day.
This image was made two years ago when I was passing by the area one rainy September evening. The sight was so beautiful and dreamy that I stopped on the rickety bridge (far left side, in a non obstructing manner) to make a few images in spite of the heavy traffic buildup a few meters ahead of me at the toll. A few months later, work once again took me past the area and I was rather dejected at the fact that a pipeline was being made through the mangroves, from the Kamote side to Kharghar. And ever since I never managed to ‘stop and stare’ at the sight, perhaps consciously preventing me from seeing the scars that took over ‘the Dream that once existed…’
The vibrant monsoon landscape of the Maharashtra State Highway 93, that passes close to Pali looks just like a beautiful painting of the typical ‘Konkan Monsoon’!
It’s been around an year since my group from the colony and I made that crazy but amazing trip to Rameshwar Vaibhav. The rain, the day, the nature and everything around us was so surreal that it was difficult for us to believe that any of this was real at all. Thankfully, we had documented proof to make us realize and then believe that it indeed real and not a dream!
Though it’s been a while I had last been to this place and beyond, I do know that it would be just as beautiful as I had left it the last time. Perhaps, even more
The Alpha Female of the ‘wolfgang’ that rules the lakes, stares at the distance, making sure if the area is secure 😀
Yet another ‘best of mornings’ spent at home!
The Alpha Female of a pack of pupps who gave me company on one of the best days at the lakes on a rather surreal morning!
Dramatic cloudscapes above the hills at Kharghar. An indicator to the upcoming monsoon.
Though it has been a while, being back is what really matters
Made my way back to the backwaters after a really long time. And this was the sight that welcomed me.
With the influx of the heat wave that had been steadily building then fluctuating since the past few days, the water levels at the holding ponds have come done considerably. Area that usually used to submerged have surfaced. It’s not clear (to me) whether if it’s due to the tidal effect or the heat. But the place indeed looks much deserted, like it was most of this year.
P.S – Had this building not been there (in the frame and in life), this picture would have been even more pleasing to my eyes.
I usually have a habit of sleeping early but at times, I do fall short of target and sleep late. It was one such night and the day turned out to be longer for me. By the time I made it to bed, it was 2 am. As I was about to lie down, I saw the beautiful hue in the night sky from the view of my bedroom’s window. That’s when I noticed that the fragments of the hill at Panjrapole, just above the mouth of the Eastern Freeway tunnel that passed below it, had this strange lighting around it. I first dismissed it as the incandescent lighting of one of the high pressure sodium (HPS) street lighting in the area, that I had been witnessing for the past 15 years, each night. But that’s when I noticed a strange half disk right above the sole tree, that managed to hold on from all the development activities in the region. It didn’t take me long to realize that it was the moon (a bit higher than in the picture when I saw it) and that it had this great orange color to it. I realized that this was the same thing I had seen a few days ago around the same time of the night and found it strange back then, thanks to all the conspiracy theory files that I had been reading and watching lately. I very much knew most sights from that window as it was one of the places where I started my photographic journey, taking numerous photographs, first with my phone and then with the camera. I also remember making numerous timelapses of the brilliant sunsets (this hill is in the west direction), cloudscapes and nightscape that would show up most days (except when it used to rain). The first time I noticed that light, I knew that it was something I hadn’t noticed before and was perhaps something that came up recently. But today I realized that it was the moon after all. I spent some time watching it and then decided to take a snap. After setting the tripod on the bed and taking multiple shots to check the focus and exposure, I managed to get a few usable shots. Thought I wouldn’t call it a great shot technically, it was a great memory for me and a gentle reminder that there was much to see and understand in this world for me, especially things that were right under my nose. There were many more miles to go in this journey and that I had just started.
There were things in this universe that no man in human form would be able to decipher. We often come past these things in life and dismiss them as myths, fake news and even bullshit. Given the arrogance humans have been harboring in them since ages, this isn’t something new, even if such things were true after all. But we must realize that there are things beyond our reach and understanding and the best we could do in this short life span was to try understand them, they way they are and not adulterate them with our personal fascinations and creativity. Most things that would make a human curious at first would turn out to be the most simple things in life that had been taking place since ages. All we needed was the patience to understand what these things meant and when it was the right time for them to reveal themselves to us, if they were ever meant to be so.
It’s the gift of observation, understanding, acceptance of one’s short comings and the spirit to work towards overcoming them in the right manner that made a human different from others.
This sure was one the best memories I had from what I call ‘The Window to Life and Beyond’