One morning at Mahabaleshwar !

The still chill morning air of Mahabaleshwar was inviting. Inviting enough for me to ensure i won a battle with slumber and was out on the road that you see here. Of course with the camera slung across the shoulder and wife in tow !

We marvel at the birds chirping. In the silence of the morning, many new sounds come alive. Like a distant rustle of the undergrowth. The swoosh of the shaking tree, long after a bird left its perch. A dog urinates in a distance with gay abandon.

Today, there is just nobody on this road. Just me. My wife. My camera. And a great passion to soak up that morning spirit and perhaps capture as many images as the camera would allow and perhaps have simple conversation.

We walk. And walk. And walk. I notice we talk less.

I spot a bird sitting right up on a tree. In complete serenity and comfort. I take aim. A few snaps later, i zoom in. Suddenly his head pops up. He looks in all directions and with a great hurry flies off. I wonder why. The camera was silent. So was my I. So was the misssus. Then ?

We continue our walk. I see a unique flower in royal splendour. I try hard to get all of it on the camera. With a focussed mind, arched back, squinted eyes and a mild tremble in the hand.

And then I begin to hear movement. Some rumble. At that moment, up ahead where the road curves, i spot two men jog towards us. I shake my head. ‘Ah. The fitness types.’ I think.

And return to look at the flower by the road, through the lens of the Canon.We hear a dog bark. A loud bark. The beauty of the flower overrides the ferocity of the bark. I continue staying where i was.

Click. Click. Click. As though moving an inch here or there would cause the flower to wilt !

And then i hear engines. A distinct slow yet steady engine. Engines. I look up from the flower, wincing at the noise. I notice that the stick in my craw, happen to be the two gentlemen who are jogging towards me, followed by two monstrous Land Cruisers at a steady trot.

With a sardonic wince at the interruption to a quiet morning, i go back to the beloved yellow flower. Only to be disturbed by louder barks. Boww Boww Boww ! The barks go.

Now i am alarmed. I look away from the flower. And then at the two men running towards us. Followed by those oversized white vehicles on this narrow road. I still am looking for those dogs.

At that instant, one of the two men, a big burly fellow, shouts. ‘Boww’. ‘Oww’. ‘Boww’ ! I am now really alarmed. I pay real atttention to the two men now.

The one running ahead is in a red tracksuit. Goggles. et al. The big burly fellow is in a safari suit. At that instant something strikes my infantile mind. I look at the chap in the red track suit with a lot more intent to identify.

Anil Ambani !

Ah. I think. In a few seconds, he passes us by in brisk pace. Followed by the big burly gent in a safari suit, shouting like a dog. At 6.15 in the morning.

And then, the first big car passes us. And then, the next one does. A few pairs of eyes look at us from within. An egregious air permeates what was pristine, just a few minutes before.

With a vengeance i return to my beloved yellow flower. My mind still with Anil Ambani and his safari clad mimicry artist. “Who does he think he is ? The world is not his. Where is equality ? ” and such other sundry questions race to the forefront.

And then i look in his direction. By now, I can only see the backs of those big cars. And think of his life. How must it be to have a truck load of guns following you when you go for a morning walk, i think.

I pity the man. Not that he has asked for any. And not that he will have any value for it. But this is what i feel. I wince through the lens. The yellow flower is shaping up well.

And then i think, ‘what does he have that i dont?’

Well other than, those mimicry artists, huge cars, billions and a mention every other day in every other news paper worth its name, nothing much. Ofcourse, thats not including a fueding brother and a saddened mother!

Click. Click. I get the yellow flower. It looks pretty good.

I wonder if i would like to trade places with this gent.

Not that his place is on offer. Neither is mine! I vehemently shake my head. Of course not. “mera pass ‘peace of mind hai’ ! ( I have peace of mind) !

Anil Ambani and his entourage must be far away. I dont hear them. And where the road takes another curve, there is a new flower i spot. With a dew drop tethered to it by sheer magic. My sentient camera readies.

I am glad i saw him. For suddenly, i seem to relish the dew drop more.

9 thoughts on “One morning at Mahabaleshwar !

  1. Pearl says:


    I’ve never run across anyone like that, although I did see Prince once…

    Tiny little man.

    As for trading lives, the sparkling white teeth have cavities. His woman snores.

    One never knows!


  2. Aleta says:

    Nothing is more of a treasure than what Mother Nature can offer. A fascinating read!

    I love the canopy of trees in the picture.

  3. Next time you meet him, he might stop and say ‘Tera peace mujhe de de Thakur!’

  4. With all the resources of money,land,guile, and political and other clout at his command, this was the only place he could find to jog in his XYZ category security splendour ?

    In this country we now have a new caste system. Those whose lives are so valuable, they need 32 police to guard one person, walk,run,travel with the person. And those whose lives are so worthless, that an injured person lies bleeding at a railway station because there is no cop there……

    Maybe Anil Ambani needs to stop an smell the yellow wildflowers, before he gets back to his executive Z category, pre tasted coffee ?

  5. Swatantra says:

    Hey! You clicked very nice pictures! Your sense of clicking is as good as your writing!

    Keep It up!

  6. Kavi says:

    Pearl : You cracked me up with that comment !! LOL The cavities and the snore !!! LOL

    Aleta : Thank you for the comment !

    Sir : LOL !! As long as he reads it as ‘peace’and not ‘piece’ i am ok with giving !!!

    Ugich Konitari : Yes. Pre tasted coffee and xyz security are A, B and C in lists of any politico worth his salt these days. Such are the ways the of world. That ladders get tossed aside after climbers climb the wall !

    Swatantra : Thank you ! Thank you !

  7. HOBO says:

    What a picture…
    Near to perfection
    Claps !!!

  8. Jeevan says:

    That pleasure wandering this place. Is someone’s rich is more than nature? Nothing buys the nature and it won’t come, we have to go receive blessing.

  9. Priya says:

    Thaz a lovely piece of picture.

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