The Orchard

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I wake up abruptly. The cool winds and the peace of the orchard make me want to sleep some more. But the string cot is uncomfortable. I open my eye’s and look up at the mango tree under which I am lying.

The mangoes are still raw. It would take another couple of months for them to turn into sweet juicy goodness. I see two birds on this tree. They seem to be fighting. I turn my head and see the litchi trees around me. The worker’s are picking up the fruit that we need to take back home with us. I’v had my share of litchi’s today. Climbing up trees all day had left my legs sore.

I close my eye’s again but sleep deceives me. I get up and start walking around. The orchard belong to my grandfather. There are litchi and mango trees. We are here after nearly a decade. It’s been so long but the tree’s are still the same. Nothing has changed here. It’s like time has stood still.

The chief of the worker’s that we have employed at the orchard is still here. He’s supervising the work. Making sure that the fruit is not harmed while picking it from the tree’s and is packed correctly. Litchi is a delicate fruit. He know’s it can go bad in no time.

I look at him working away. He has aged a lot. But his voice still has the same booming quality that was there 10 year’s ago. That hasn’t changed.

We have to go back today. I feel sad about leaving. The peace of this place make’s me want to stay here for some more days.

It had rained yesterday. That is the reason the worker’s are here working overtime. Rain’s are not good for the fruit at this time.

But the heat has been wiped away with the onset of the monsoon. I take off my flip flops and walk bare feet on the wet grass.

My family is at the other end of the orchard. They are putting the boxes full of litchi in our car.

It’s time to go. I look around one last time and take in the serenity of the place, promising myself to not wait for another decade to come back here.

 

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Heat Waves And Vacation Dreams

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If you go by the temperature in Delhi, we are all going to be fried like eggs in no time. It’s literally 49 degree Celsius out there and if god forbid you sit in your car which was parked in the sunlight then god save you.

I literally felt like my skin was blistering this morning. I opened all windows and switched on the a/c to full blast to get the god damn ‘green house effect heat’ out of my car.

I’v switched to linen pants and cotton churidars because my regular jeans and trousers would probably just burn my skin. :-/

And to say nothing of the frequent power cuts that Delhi is facing these days. Imagine such high temperatures and just a fan over your head to cool you.

Days like these make me feel like running away from Delhi and coming back in the winters. Like the birds. Except that they run away from winter’s and I’m running away from summer’s.

Vacation is a luxury for us because my dad is adamant that we would all go together as a family and he can barely leave office because the work load is literally killing us.

The hills are calling my name but I’m trapped in office and can barely get enough time to even go out with friends, forget about going away for a few days for recreation. So I’m consoling myself with going through old pictures of me when we went on vacations and the above picture is one of my favorite’s!

It was taken when I was about six months old and my parents took me for my first visit to the hills. This place was ‘Kempti Falls’ in Mussoorie. It’s a water fall in the middle of the hills and is a great place to be in summer’s because the water is from melted ice caps and is the perfect respite from the heat.

The water was chilling cold and my dad made me stand in the water and my expression clearly shows how much I’m enjoying it while I look up to him and smile. 🙂

I obviously don’t remember anything of those times but these picture’s show me how much fun it would have been to be there.

Now Mussoorie or most of the hill stations are too crowded because of the exploding population and the growing urbanization that you can barely feel like being in a hill station to relax. You have to go higher up on the hills to get some peace and quite.

I’m after my dad’s life to try and take out some time so that we can go somewhere but it seems a futile task. I can see how much work there is and taking a few days off is going to be really tough.  😦

So I’m trying to be content with these old pictures and praying that somehow dad can take some time off and we can all go for a vacation.

Oh! And I’m also praying that we get the monsoon as early as possible so that we get respite from this killing heat wave that we are facing these days. 😛