Sunday, June 28, 2009

My fellow worshippers

I was at a church service this morning. This church is surrounded by a rubber plantation. The church is not very big, but there is a broad verandah running all around the church, where too people stand during Sunday service. I'm a verandah regular and so I get to be kind of outdoors as much as a part of the service.
This morning there were a large number of disparate voices added to the chants and singing of the congregation. The singing got loudest when the church bells were being rung during the service, till I just had to look out at the trees to note who our fellow worshippers were.

There were a pair of drongos--

one, maybe two, racket-tailed drongos
two brown-headed barbets

a flock of mynahs squabbling among themselves and quarrelling with a squirrel who had the temerity to wander among them--

and a brown turtle-dove like bird which I can't get the image of (since I'm not too sure what it is).
As you can imagine, the music of these feathered worshippers ranged from beautiful (the racket-tails) to harsh (the mynahs). The racket-tails especially sang loud and long every time the bells rang!
During the sermon I sat on the verandah steps and watched the bird chorus.
I promise I heard the sermon--it was about living a simple life :-)

NB All images from Creative Commons on Wikipedia

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Crow Pheasant

This picture is just to give you an idea of the crow pheasant that I caught on video in the dense undergrowth outside my window.(It's the rainy season and jungle has almost reclaimed the land!)

Here's the video

Thursday, June 11, 2009

I love the bucolic scene I pass everyday on my way between schools. There is a wide expanse of no-longer-farmed rice fields full of wild greenery. When I pass that way at around 9 a.m, there are a number of cows out in the fields accompanied by different varieties of birds. Sometimes there are mynahs sitting on their backs, at other times there are drongos and always a small white stork standing around. At that time of the morning, there is usually a kingfisher sitting patiently on a branch over looking the water. I'm always tempted to stay awhile. i have tried many a time to take a photograph, but somehow--maybe the photographer, maybe the camera--I have never been able to get a picture that quite conveys the restfulness of the scene.
What makes the scene even more precious is that I'm sure that the scenery will no longer be there a few years down the line.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Sunday night--I go outside. Canine neighbour comes to play. There's pale watery moonshine. The frogs and crickets chorus; fireflies make patterns in the foliage. I see white cotton wool clouds sailing swiftly overhead, pushed by dark grey, and soon all that's visible of the moon is a faint glow. The darkness is deep. I know my dog friend is coming only by the white patch on his chest and his four white paws. I think it's prudent to move back inside.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

The monsoons seem to have started in earnest and brought down the temperature quite a few notches. I miss the moonlight, but it's pleasant to sit in my room and be serenaded by a chorus of a wide variety of frog calls and the chirping of crickets. Very relaxing.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

After coming back home, I have been for a couple of night walks, one just now.  The moonlight is so bright--although the monsoon is supposed have begun!  It was beautiful out, although there was no real breeze, with the fireflies out and the scent of the night flowers wafting around me.
But,.... I so missed my dog.  This is the first time in almost 22 years that I don't have a dog.