Now a days, the naked banyan tree by the kayal has special bloom all over its body. See the picture. They are not its regular foliage but, but… birds! Birds that roost every night. The black birds and the white birds.

Soon after archana, when the ether is still gray, go to the juice stall area and look up. The early white birds are stretching and beating wings even on the perch. At one point `phew!’ these egrets take to wings and go in an unmistakable direction.

birds at dawn, Amritapuri

The black cormorants are early to bed but late to rise. The sun has to shine on them and stir them from slumber. However, since they are not pretending to be asleep, reminding us of one of Amma’s oft repeated precepts, they do eventually wake up. They stretch and haggle a little before deciding to take to wings. But they all eventually do. Birds obey all natural laws.

And the mynas go on chirping in shrill voice, living in their own world of din and noise, till it is time for the dapple winged little mynas to go their way.

It is worth missing your morning chai one day, i tell you.

PS: There are not many crows here now, you know? Their cawing is heard under the screeches of kingfisher or kuhukuhu of the noisiest-of-the-season, koel, or the hysteric laughter of the woodpecker.

– Sandhya