Though it is high time for the monsoon to have stopped completely, it does rain quite often even now. The mornings usually have an overcast with the sun making a brief appearance at times. The evenings follow with raging thunderstorms that are often accompanied by spells of heavy rain. But inspite of having an unpredictable weather, the evenings often lead you to amazing scenes like these, becoming a must needed treat to the tired eye and soul. And the fact that these untimely rains keep the dust, pollution and heat in check is always a boon!
A beautifully lit sky forming the background to a vibrant lush green slope of a hill as viewed from the foothills during sunset at Kharghar, Navi Mumbai.
Enter the month of October and the rains will be soon gone, only to surface next year. Though it rains quite often even now, the signs of the retreat are evident. This year, it had rained enough and after a point it had started becoming a pain. Yes, the monsoon is far better than the scorching heat of the summer and water is a resource that one always finds good use of. But I wished it had rained in patches and a bit more mildly, giving everyone a small window to enjoy the fruits of the monsoon. Or maybe I, as my city, should have prepared in a much better way to have take it more as a boon than a bane. But there is always a next time. And yes, I will really miss the rains once they are gone…
The K-Town skyline one fine evening, just before sundown.
It had been raining heavily for the most of this month. The day would start with a dark and intense skyline and end with a heavy downpour, with wild winds rocking the foliage so hard that they would uproot the next second. The whole day was damp and gloomy with the sun nowhere to be seen. Stepping out of the house for work or leisure wasn’t an option.
But for the past few days, such skies and beautiful evenings have become staple, serving as a much needed break and also treat to the eye and soul. Maybe the rain gods will descend again and cause even more havoc. Or maybe not. But days like these fuel the mind with hope and give the strength to keep moving.
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’
A train passes through the Vashi Creek bridge during early hours, from Vashi to Mankhurd.
A juvenile monkey walks past the rooftop at one of the residential buildings at Anushaktinagar.
As a part of the deforestation activities and the rampant ‘development’ taking place in the area, the resident wildlife has no place to go but to share the space with the ‘developed’ humans.
Though there hasn’t been much of a struggle yet and the monkeys seem to be more ‘cooperative’ than their human counterparts, what lies next is something that has to be waited for and watched.
We are yet again proving to ourselves that we seem to have a poor memory and understanding about the fact that these animals were here first, even before we figured out what ‘science’ and ‘development’ even meant.
People walk up the Parsik Hill as seen during a pleasant morning.
Morning clouds above the Kharghar township as seen from the Kharghar Hills.