I set out to spend a day close to nature. It turned out to be something else.
A day of gross sights…?
Began at Chirag Delhi red light. I am sitting in an auto, just before the flyover. And I am staring absentmindedly. I see a puny little rat come out of nowhere and start crossing the road at breakneck speed, as if his tail was on fire. It was actually a ‘kid rat’ for the lack of a better word. As it reached across the road in great speed it suddenly stopped. I was wondering why it was lying quiet, and low just like me a crow too had noticed it. The crow comes pouncing on it, picks it and is gone. Grossest of sights I have seen in recent times.
In the cab again, we have this discussion about pets. Proma starts by telling how a cat had scratched her mom last night and how when her mom screamed the cat got so scared that it decided to use the bed as a loo. Disgusted, we whole heartedly condemn the situation. I especially go out to say that even cats need to be tied up just like dogs. Even better if they are put in cages like birds and hung up in the air. When another animal loving colleague heatedly disagrees I go on to declare:
“I hate pets. Animals are animals, Period! I do not believe in the idea of liberating them by keeping them as pets at home.”
That’s just how the day began…there is more to come. After office I and my colleagues head towards Nizammuddin, a highly Moslem dominated area. And are greeted by all kinds of culture shocks…skull caps everywhere and smell of the unnamable something. Wasn’t quite prepared for it. Like a crude joke there is slaughtered beef mocking and staring at us from open stalls. Two minutes of hell included kids pulling us about here and there, to come and eat at their restaurant.
I finally breathe a sigh of relief at Humayun’s Tomb. But there too this strange dog, more like a huge wolf had to very irritatingly come and sneeze right behind me. Not even once but a couple of times. And then we enter this relic of Sher Shah Suri. Real relic, I must tell you. Inside the mausoleum, there was a dark, steep and narrow stairway. In the excitement, without thinking twice I dash towards it followed by Proma only to realize the horrible stink that was with us for quiet sometime now was bat shit. Like a B-grade horror movie a bat flies by just millimeters above our heads. Once outside in the balcony it was much better. But climbing down turned out to be even worse than climbing up. A really unnerving and maddening affair. While the staircase was quiet dark from below, in the dying sunlight of the balcony we could see innumerable bats hanging from the roof. To add to the eeriness Proma took full five minutes to take one step down and I had to wait till she took the next step. Completely psyched out I wanted to jump right away to the last step.
It was really enough of animals for one day. But everything was not so bad. Like it is very difficult to say what it felt like watching the ever busy squirrels or even the beautiful exotic bird with a crown on its head. Or the proud and royal peacock that went strutting right past us. And there were the lucky birds and the parrots too. Words can’t describe how it felt to sit alone on the stairs facing the birds, the squirrels and listening to nothing but the twitters and flutters.
Though there was a beehive in the distant and maybe bees also, there must be honey too. In all, it did turn out to be quite an exciting day, one amongst the birds and beasts of nature. It felt as if all of them together coming one after the other were trying to tell me something. What?? I can’t say.