How I met my grandfather

Lately, my maternal grandfather - Mr. Clarence Motha - has started to bear a slight resemblance to Spotted Owlets. Especially, the curving slope on his cranium. These days, it looks smooth and swollen, like the skull of an elderly owlet. My grandfather is 91 years old. His health has been deteriorating of late. He has... Continue Reading →

Goodbye is the new hello: Jewel bugs

It was around 5:00 PM. I was tonguing the evening air on a parrot-green grass hill at Mooppanpara in Kerala. Despite the cloudy weather, I wanted to stick around. It had been a long and tiring day. And the scenery was mesmeric. The sun resembled a dusty grapefruit trying to un-blush. It sunk, beneath the... Continue Reading →

To be a bee-eater or not to be a bee

Bee-eaters can be found all over India. From metropolitan cities to ghosted forests about 5000 feet up in the Himalayas. They are identified by their curvy beaks and long tail-feathers. Some are born with blue beards and others blessed with roasted chestnut-colored skullcaps. On bright summer days, the undersides of their wings hold sunlight. Like jet-propelled turquoise demitasses, they... Continue Reading →

I woof you too

I have mixed feelings about pet dogs. While I want to kiss every dog I meet on its wet nose, I am unsure if it is a deep and purposeful bond.  It seems to be a symbiotic bond between two emotionally-needy creatures. The Homo Sapien and the Felis Domesticus. I had a pet Pomeranian called... Continue Reading →

The answer to life is not 30: Great Indian Hornbills

When I turned 30, I felt insecure about my age whenever I accidentally caught my reflection in the mirror. I groaned as I sauntered past glass-encased pillars and tinted car windows. It wasn't about the wrinkles, the graying beard or the receding hairline. But in my eyes – there shone, ungallantly, a reminder that things... Continue Reading →

Be afraid, be very afraid: White-Eyed Buzzards

Many birds feel shy around humans. Perhaps, they are just terrified. Why wouldn't they be? Our species has a dubious track record. We are like the meteor that killed the dinosaurs, except that we think we can repair the damage. Start all over again. Make everything bloom. Look at me, for instance. I pollute the air that... Continue Reading →

A love unspoken: Racket-Tailed Drongos

I was once privy to a fascinating dialogue between a pair of Racket-Tailed Drongos in the semi-evergreen forests of Vagamon. I had no idea what they were chirping about. But it looked like a heated debate. One seemed to intimidate the other. There was some dancing. It was theatrical. The conversation lasted for about three minutes.... Continue Reading →

Speak now and forever hold your peace

I wish the dead could speak. I don’t want to listen to family members talk about how much it hurts that they are gone. Or whatever their friends have to say about all they have left behind. Instead, I seek to find what went through their minds during the last few minutes of their lives.... Continue Reading →

A case for the commoners: Indian House Crows

I don’t know what to think about House Crows anymore. They have become the cockroaches of birds. But it isn’t indicative of their statuses as unpleasant vermin. It just reflects my biases about certain creatures based on personal experiences. I have always been katsaridaphobic. The reason being that cockroaches go out of their way to strike... Continue Reading →

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