On 5th of June, International Environmental day was celebrated and on 8th June entered a wild elephant into Mysore creating havoc and destruction. It is as though the elephant representative wanted to remind the people about the promises made to protect wildlife on 5th June. I think the world got your message and hope you are all left alone in your habitat.
This year when we visited Mysore for Dasara, we were greeted with ugly multiple hoardings proclaiming Dasara festivities with portraits of politicians over them. They made the city look cluttered and ugly taking away the heritage charm.
I hope next year more common sense prevails and the hoardings do a disappearing act!
Today, 20th March 2010 has been declared for the first time as the World House Sparrow Day by Bombay Natural History Society. A day to bring back the memories of the almost extinct house sparrows in cities.
Having a day dedicated to the house sparrow shows how much the people are missing these busy birds. But aren’t all of us responsible for driving the sparrows away from houses / cities? They had enough of the noise and air pollution and like us they are not ready to adjust / compromise.
1411 tigers left in the wild is a shocking revelation that people heard over and over again on TV. This news wouldn’t have had any impact on majority of the people. But for the people who are enthusiastic about wild life conservation, it is time for a reality check….a time to ponder at the loss of the majestic animals almost heading towards extinction in the wild…a time for action to save tigers.
The people roaring on www.saveourtigers.com initiative are overwhelming but are these roars enough to protect the majestic beasts? Who will bell the man??? The man, who in the name of development and greediness does not have the slightest regard for the helpless tigers,… The man, who uses his technological know-how and intelligence to corner and kill the rightful citizens of the jungle only to satisfy his never ending selfish needs,… At least the “bell” will warn the wild animals of the arrival of the most dangerous species on this earth and will be able to run for cover.
When we visited Shivanasamudra, we were very surprised to come across this mile stone with New York painted on it along with the name of the village known as Hunninadoddi, which lies 7 Km from Maddur and 17 Km from Malavalli. When I asked some youth sitting on a bench nearby, they said that as the assigned person was re-painting the milestone on September 11th 2001, he heard about the twin towers being attacked in New York and the loss of innumerable people. He instinctively painted New York on the milestone as homage to people who lost their lives in New York.
Humanity has no borders!
News of ban of alcohol and plastic on Nandi hills is something to cheer about as this can give back the respect the hills had lost to the hic…hic…culture. I have read of “scotch on rocks” but not an empty bottle of scotch (alcohol) smashed on rocks! I remember we zeroed in on a neat place to open our picnic basket at Himvad Gopalaswamy Betta and my nephew was about to sit on a rock when a glass piece pierced into his feet. Our picnic turned into a nightmare!
Picture – Bottles smashed on rocks in Pearl Valley
One day I was talking to my dad’s friend who retired as the principal of one of the esteemed engineering colleges in Mysore. As he was fond of my son and was aware of how active he was he casually enquired whether there were any parks or playgrounds for him to play near the place where I lived in Bangalore. I said with much chagrin “Yes, there is a big park but reserved for senior citizens”. He said, “It is so unfortunate that children are being deprived of open space to play and let out their energy”. He turned to my dad and quipped, “We senior citizens are being spoilt!”
Being a mother of a very active boy, I was always in a dilemma to find ways for his need to play outdoor games. The roads in cities like Bangalore are extremely dangerous for kids to cycle, play badminton, skate etc., I would generally pack him off to my mother’s place in Mysore during holidays, where the calm streets and children friendly neighborhood would make his holidays memorable. But what about the other times in this chaotic city with all the parks being pruned and landscaped with neatly laid walking path for the senior citizens. If any child is caught as much as holding a ball in his hands in the park, the senior citizens pounce on them and knock the daylights out of the child scaring him not to enter their park again. Have they forgotten that they were children too? Have they forgotten the pranks and games they played? Now, they expect the kids to sit at home prim and proper and read books and watch TV. “Makkale.. adjust madkolli”/Children.. please adjust is their command. “Hoon, makkale adjust madkobeku..yenu madodu….role reversal agide alla….yenu madakke aguththe?”/Yes, children have to adjust what else can they do when there is a role reversal. Elders can spend time watching TV, walking in their garden or terrace, reading, talking, debating etc., but the children have to play.
Please senior citizens understand and let go of being the golden citizens. Remember the days you spent outdoors, cycling, running, jumping with freedom and let the children and the future senior citizens have at least the freedom to play for few hours.
Spitsville… yes… accepted…. but this incident by far takes the trophy. The other day as usual there was a traffic jam on Bannerghatta road. I was on my bike waiting behind a bus for the traffic to move . I saw this conductor standing near the door convert the bus to a bathroom by pouring some water on his face with a 2 ltr water bottle and gargling with all his might using more water and the next second without batting an eyelid Pichkooooo! He spit on the road. If innocent people come in the way of his shower his refrain would be “adjust madkothare bidi”/”they will be okay with it”. A car with windows rolled over was fortunately right beside the door and people inside might be wondering about the sudden cloud burst on a clear day, a couple on a bike unfortunately were just behind the car and beside the bus and was at the receiving end of the drizzle. The guy on the bike just looked disgustingly at the conductor and tried to move back unsuccessfully…but he didn’t dare oppose fearing the wrath from the uncivilized person. Sigh! “yeshtu adjust madkolakke agaththe heli saar?”/”How much can one adjust…tell me sir?”
Pavements are called footpaths in India and except for the foot every goddamn thing is seen on them. You will be surprised if you just miss out stamping on a cute mouse, which happens to take a peek in the gap between the flat stone slabs of the pavement to see if it can take a stroll on the supposed footpath.
Some stretches of the pavement are so badly maintained that you would rather walk on the road and avoid being hit by vehicles rather than walk on the footpath and fall into an unknown hole (we cannot copy Alice in Wonderland can we??) and break some vital parts of the body.