Category Archives: #Nature

Tale of two tails ( the two pigeons)

“Say Saffy  , why don’t  we play a game.”  Suggests Daffy as he  and Saffy perch on the nearby parapet.

“Are you ok ? To think of playing games when all these humans are so stressed about some virus.”  

“Any way tell me what do you have in mind” Saffy looks with enquiring eyes.

“ Well have you ever thought of  how tḥe wind blows?”

“Daffy , I don’t understand what game this is? Please be  simple and clear.”

“ See, Saffy , when we fly, which is easier ; with the wind or against it ? “

“Obviously with the wind is easier.”

“Ok then , lets fly around the world , and see whether we reach this place agaiṇ.”

“ We can both go together , with the wind. “

Thus started ān adventure by these two pigeons . What is in Daffy’s mind ?

They both realized that as they flew, there was a lot to observe. The entire environment had changed. The skies were clear. Forests  reappeared.  The rivers flowed with pure water.

“Have you any idea whether there is still a hole in the sky?” asked Saffy.

“ I don’t understand such things , Saffy, but I do know that flyiṇg in the sky is less stressful and a real pleasure.”

The two friends continued ,their journey. They saw new developments …. not  the Crane and  Construction  work. No in the various  trees, nest building began with great fervour.

“Daffy , when do you plan to settle down ? “

 “Hey Saffy , please don’t speak about settling down. Just see what the smart humans have done with their ‘settling’ and ‘developing’ “

“ I’m surprised that  these people can stay in one place and quieten down. Why could they not do this earlier? Their incessant desire to be on the move, certainly caused changes, harmful to us. “

Thus Daffy and Saffy flew along , chatting all the time.

As they flew together ,they encountered   many other birds. The various calls and flurry of feathers, seemed  to be a celebration of life. Clouds floated serenely against blue skies .

“  Hey Daffy, just look below. Is this the new earth? “

“ What do you mean ‘new’ earth; it was always meant to be like this, until all the new ideas of man changed everything for the  worse. “

“ And Daffy,these same  humans , want to spread their ‘wings’ to the moon and beyond.”

“ You better not talk too much , Saffy, nowadays , we are being watched closely.”

The two pigeons soon realized that their dream of flying around the world , would not materialize.

The direction of winds changed and  they thought it best to return to old nesting places.

There is a saying that birds of a feather flock together. Dear reader, when you see the two pigeons of  differing  color and breed, does it surprise you ?

They have  one  tale to share, inspite of differing tails. . Where are we with our differences. Do exteriors matter?

Do the hearts that beat in man , differ ? Can the same heart love and hate at the same time?

Tell me what gives life?  The choice remains….can I love or hate? 

Will my choice determine peace or strife?

The Barbets

Why dost thou look at me ?

Will I steal from thy little nest,

so well prepared,

to allow only you and yours

to feed the little ones

Yes , you do not fail

In your search for food ;

a provider in earnest .

Where do you go

And how fast you return ?

They wait with outstretched beaks

To feed on the finest you bring ,

Surely that day will arrive,

When they too fly away.

So is the circle of life ,

They will find new trees

Build new nests

To bring in new lives

To begin a fresh verse

Sully in solitary splendour

Sully

Sully the pristine parrot liked to view his flock of friends from a distance.

Among them, Tom , Dick and Harry chased after daily necessities..food at the top of their list of needs

Tom asked Sully “ Don’t you feel hungry ?”

“ Why ? Being apart gives me time to think and observe.” replied Sully.

Dick asked “what do you observe?”

“Oh , the scramble for food and a lack of concern for the other”

Harry interjected “ So , you think we are selfish!”

“Oh no , I mean , there are ways of seeking food , without outdoing the others and competing with the crows and pigeons.”

“Besides ? I may find tasty morsels from my perch , with an eagles eye.” said Sully.

Suddenly an eagle swooped down and carried away a tiny sparrow .

“Did you see that ? And there are some delicious live insects and worms , much better than the feeder with boring grain.”

Leader Tom now quite irritated shrieked “ You think you know it all.”

Sully looked on “ Does it disturb you that I am on my perch , enjoying the cool breeze and observing your crazy scramble ?”

“ Will food run out ?”

So this was the reason for the scramble :

Will I take what I require for today, or grab and horde , for tomorrow?

Do I care for the needs of others .

I saw the coppersmith barbet carrying morsels of food for its young in the nest holed out in the bark of the May flower tree.

Coppersmith Barbet

Do not worry

‘Your Heavenly Father feeds them all.’ (Matthew 6:26b)

The Crow’s Nest (A ray of hope)

A couple of crows

Preparing their home

With bare necessities ,

Branches , and anything in sight

They fly to and fro

Up and down ,

Beaks holding

A stick or two for a nest.

I see a ray of Hope as these crows

Prepare for new lives

Despite the silence of

People in lockdown mode .

Is this not a sign from the Master,

Of new life ahead?

Just as the dove held an olive branch

At the end of the great flood ?

Thank you Lord

For your love and compassion

You care for us

And your mercies are endless .

We Stand Still

Sunshine of hope ,

Birds singing

Butterflies flitting

And all at peace

Can you imagine the entire world

today stands still ;

Pray where is the hustle and bustle

of Man who had

no time for anyone

least of all to

recognise our Creator .

Does the Lord have to do this,

To send a virus ?

To draw attention

to Himself ;

from creatures who forgot their Creator ?

On our knees we pray ,

Lord have mercy

Forgive us our trespasses ;

Send us your healing touch

And give us New Life

As we live again

To love and serve you

To meet and greet

To rejoice ,

To cherish another

Family , friend or foe,

Rich or poor,

To resolve our differences

And to live in peace , where

‘The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid,

the calf and the lion and the fatling together,

and a little child shall lead them.( Isaiah 11:6)

They will not hurt or destroy on all my holy mountain;

for the earth will be full of the knowledge of the LORD as the waters cover the sea.(Isaiah 11:9)

Justino & Crowie- How Hotel ‘Dona Eliza’ got its name

Justino Lobo

This is a true story about Justino an artist of great calibre whose multifaceted skills showed up in various ways.

I was privileged to meet with him and his wife Sonja , when Anjean and I were invited over to their home for dinner. Anjean is a school friend of Sonja That evening was eventful as I had a very interesting and intense conversation with Justino. He described his art and how he goes about it. I was amazed to know that he never planned his work on blank canvas.. He shared how he begins at one corner of the page and continued to draw or paint inspirationally throughout the page to cover it in entirety.

 I viewed some of his work and was stunned to see such drawings , with a finesse  unimaginable.  

I asked him “ Have you had any exhibitions of your work?” Justino replied “ I  am not interested in doing so. I just enjoy my work . I certainly do not like to put a tag to my paintings. I’d rather give it away,  than lose my peace of mind.  The only time I had been given an award nationally was many years ago. My   painting was sent for some exhibition in Delhi. I was surprised that they   recognised my work for a prize.

He was encouraged in art by his father Peter (PAN)Lobo, since the age of 4 years . He gave him a special room so he could scribble on the wall. Justino uses various mediums, like pallete knife, pen and ink and even pencil. When he gets into the mood, something happens and he begins sketching free hand , even from below at the bottom of the page upwards. He continues, to sketch where his dream takes him. He brings out the female figure without any vulgarity . His humility shows, when he acknowledges that there are so many artists better than him. Some lived , but some may have died in the womb. He appreciates life, and rejoices at the time given to him.

   Now we come to an interesting story. Every morning Justino spends time at his easel drawing or painting. ( he also does metal engraving art). One morning a crow came at his window and  cawed as if to say “ give me some food” while Justine had some breakfast by the side. So he kept some of it on the window sill. Crowie ( so Justino named her)  gobbled up the  feed, and waited for more. .Justino obliged.

Crowie
Perched on Justino’s easel

This practise continued the next day and even rest of  the days at meal times. She is now a regular visitor eversince.

Soon  Crowie got so familiar that she even perched at the top of Justino’s easel. You can imagine  Justino’s delight to have sucḥ an admirer of his work .

One of the important projects which Justino worked on, was an ‘apartment’ project at a family property in Calangute.  He was confident of his architectural talent ,  and with  his  artistic mindset, designed the entire project. His two sons , however had reservations about this project. They envisioned a hotel, rather than apartments for their future.

This did not deter Justino. With some deft strokes of his  innate talent, he converted the ‘apartment’ project  into a plan for a hotel within a short time.This project was accomplished in good time.

All that remained was to name the hotel. Thus started  the episode of writing names on paper and stacking them on the table. An assortment of names came up for consideration. The stack remained on this table. They were quite frustrated as they could not come to any conclusion. After all, a name carries a lot of weight and  gives the hotel a unique image.

One morning , Crowie flew into the dining room . She alighted on the table and began pecking and choosing the various pages on the table (with the shortlisted names for the hotel)

Finally after several pages being discarded on the side, Crowie pecked at one page, pulled it out of the stack and dropped it to the ground. Crowie then flew off.

Justino picked up that page ,  and looked at the written name…

It was ‘ Dona Eliza’, the name of his grandmother, and so this name remained for the hotel.

Justine’s sons Ashton and Ivan  , are proprietors of this hotel .

Justino and family

I wonder if Crowie, will get preferential treatment when she visits “Dona Eliza”.

I certainly am waiting to see this beautiful hotel at Calangute ,and wish that Hotel ‘Dona Eliza’ will flourish and be a ‘home away from home’ for many tourists who visit Goa.

Hotel Dona Eliza

Oh and here’s some news , on Crowie’s last visit, a baby crow came along. Justino has now  befriended Crowie’s growing family or is it Crowie’s way of introducing her family to Justino.

Crowie selecting the name
An invitation to lunch
Crowie enjoying her lunch