March 24th, 2008


Sometimes they miss the smile....

When people are very immersed in their subject, sometimes the humour of it escapes them. Here's an email I got on a mailing list that I belong to:

Dear xxx

The cat was spotted on a garden plant of Mussanda at the
rest house in Miao,Arunachal Pradesh

The "cat" in question is actually a caterpillar...but the mention of a cat from a place called Miao set me laughing when the mail was quite a serious one! :)))

I never knew that there WAS a place called Miao...I can just imagine myself going to the travel agent, and him saying, "Where do you want to go?" and I reply "Miao", and he says, "When you finish your animal impersonations, will you tell me where you want to go?"....
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BRHills, K.Gudi JLR, 17 and 18 March 2008

The 17th of March was a landmark birthday for KM...yes, he (I can't believe it!) turned 60. When I see him, I still see the 28-year-old whom I married, so I keep having to remind myself that 32 years have passed in the blink of an eye...

In our community, a 60th birthday is celebrated as a second wedding, with the husband actually tying a fresh "thAli" for the wife....but since we hardly have any family members nearby, he was rather adamant that he didn't want a "fuss" made over his birthday; he does not celebrate birthdays in general, and couldn't see why there should be a departure this time. But I secretly asked my sister-in-law to come over from Chennai. And then, out of the blue, he said, "Shall we go to B R Hills that day?" and, truly delighted, I rushed to comply. I made the booking at JLR, and we were all set to leave at 5am.

At 4.30am, he said he had a sore throat and didn't want to go! But at 9am, when he got up looking quite OK, I insisted that we should go...and certainly, it turned out into a memorable trip, even though just for a day!

We reached the K.Gudi (Kyathadevararyana Gudi if you want to twist your poor tongue into knots be precise ) Camp of JLR at about 3pm and this too, turned into a mini NTP meet, with Nahar, R Narayan and G S Narayan all being there...and yours truly of course.) Nahar had organized a lovely tree-planting ceremony for KM, and sampige (champa,magnolia) saplings were planted...I do hope they grow and thrive!

As usual, all lousy pics are to be excused as documentation...

Here's the sign for our destination, with that wonderfully-well designed Karnataka logo on top:

br hills sign 170308

Here's Mr Tree-Planter himself:

KM planting a sapling kgudi 170308

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Though there were just 2 safaris, and one ended in pouring rain, it was still a most amazing trip!

I close with this picture of the colours that run riot in the hills right now, with the new leaves of spring:

rangeela k gudi jlr 180308

B R Hills...Beautiful, Rapturous Hills! :)

Anush and his help....

anushsh helped Karthik put up a page on the common flowering trees of Bangalore on his website, here at

I think it was very nice of Anush to do this, and help a very knowledgeable person share some of that knowledge with others. (I will not, of course, mention here that kalyan has also helped Karthik put up the website; as it is, he is saying that I have added "too much masala" to my account of him in my JLRNTP article!)

I am touched when I see youngsters who make such good-hearted gestures. Way to go, anushsh!

Lalbagh on Saturday; films on the weekend...

Karthik had told me that he would be free this weekend, so I tried to organize an outing; the weather was not very predictable, so he said that rather than Manchinabele, which was much further away, we should go to Lalbagh, where if it rained, we could do some id'ing of hot idlis and coffee at any nearby Darshini...

We were a round (well, none of us are ROUND, really, but...) dozen...Karthik the NTP Guruji, and the NTP members were, in alphabetical order, Adarsh,Anjali,Geeta,Pallavi,Prasanna,Vittal, and me; and then there were, also in alphabetical order, Vittal's son Adu (it should be Jayaditya, but I want to put him first!),Vittal's friend and potential NTP-taker Girish, Nisarg, whom I have met at various birding and wildlife locations, and Pallavi's husband Preetam, who just took Sudhir Shivaram 's course on photography, and was there to try out all the newly-learned stuff....

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A lovely weekend, spent with a lot of friends...what could be nicer?