Man vs wild: The fantastic beast edition

(Updated - with videos) I have had a few memorable experiences with the Indian Gaur - the largest bovine species in South East Asia. During our introduction in 2012, I saw a herd crossing a golf course in Kodaikanal. Awestruck by their imposing physique, I approached them with reckless abandon. Mercifully, one of the alpha... Continue Reading →

Birds are not musicians; they are songs

White-Throated Kingfishers sound like a jackhammer in the hands of a jazz drummer. Asian Koels can be mistaken for star-crossed Shakespearean strangers cooing goodbye one last time. Black-Winged Kites shriek as though they are auditioning for musical satires. If the world was any crueler, music labels would hire poachers to hunt down Malabar Hornbills, and steal their summer playlists. The most beautiful... Continue Reading →

In search of bluebirds and fairies

The scariest part of a downward spiral is the speed at which things fall apart. You are always a bad decision away losing it all. One phone call. Just one unexpected turn to find yourself in a bottomless pit. But life doesn’t come crashing down. It caves in. Crumbles under the weight of despair. Then,... Continue Reading →

Shake, rattle and unfurl: Grey Wagtails

I first saw Grey Wagtails during a taxi ride in Kodaikanal. One was perched on a wooden gate, looking like a June morning. It wore the hues of an early sun, flanked by greying clouds. The driver told me, in Tamil, that they were called Valikaati. Loosely translated, it meant “pathfinder”. My mind started to... Continue Reading →

Dawn of the planet of the Minivets

The crack of the dawn fills my head with colors. It does weird stuff to my lungs. Leaves my insides all shook up. But I don’t feel like puking.  It’s like the sky is undergoing a cesarean section to the tempo of Franz Liszt's Hungarian Rhapsody Number 2. And I am watching the rebirth of... Continue Reading →

Monsoonal blues: Fly away home

No year has ever gone by without its share of obstacles. Except when I was 8 years old. Yeah, that was a good year. It must be the same with you, right? I hear people talk about their ups and downs. Isn’t that how things work? At least, I hope so. I will feel a... Continue Reading →

Positive thinking: What the cluck do we know?

I believe in the power of positive thinking. But I can see how some people find it nauseous when they are asked to emulate others and just be more positive. And why thinking happy thoughts can make us look like cows - their udders tickled by the sun. I used to be a negative person.... Continue Reading →

Orange is the new black: Bird photography

I love photographing birds. It feels so exhilarating that I am willing to walk out on any part of my life for it. But first, I must buy a professional camera. Then, figure out a way to make people pay me for it. It’s a pipedream that may take another decade to evolve into a... Continue Reading →

Rare necessities: Endangered birds of India

Whenever I spot rare birds, I am giddy with joy. My confidence begins to build. I realize how much they mean to me. And I start to emotionally invest in them. But if they decide to leave before I can take a photograph, whiffs of anguish flood my nostrils. As they disappear into oblivion -... Continue Reading →

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