Mirth

My perch in the tree-house creaked. I sat heavily on my feeble rump, feeling in every breath the pangs of a bereaved man. “Old Hag knows the cause of your melancholy,” said Old Hag, who, turning around I noticed, was seated legs folded, roughly two feet off the floor in thin ether. “But let me…

Cry Baby

On 24 April 2011, evidence was presented that the only thing big about an adolescent male tiger is his body. Deep inside, he’s still a toddler, really. A little after half past five, M2, another handsome product of the Mirchahni School of Superstardom, crossed over to the grassland from the woods of Andhiyari. We thought…

Portfolio of a Princess

A Green-Carpet Welcome: When all hope was lost and chances seemed thinner than a shoestring, against all odds emerged from the woods this precocious girl of incredible audacity, crossed between a crowd of vehicles and walked out into the open where an exalted crowd of stunned onlookers gave her a rapturous green-carpet welcome on the…

In the Good Books

This picture is featured as a full-page spread in Valmik Thapar‘s latest book, “The Tiger – Soul of India,”published by Oxford University Press. I thank my naturalist Mukesh Burman and my driver Vikas for making the image possible. 

Trick Boxing

In contrast to the glamorous sports of the human world, which erect stardom, fuel passions and ignite effigies, break backs with frayed tempers, weld relationships and engender scandals, halt countries and drive lucre under cobwebbed wooden tables, there is in this much pecuniary labyrinth yet a sport that is untouched by the wand of fame…

The Light of the World

  Just the other day I read astounded the report of a ‘dead’ baby “coming alive” after his mother put him to her bosom and told him her grand plans for his future.  Doctors were suitably gobsmacked as they saw the very infant they had pronounced as being in an eternal rest hours before, coming…

Twin Wins

  When I had a sobering drink at night, quite to the extent that I could see twins of everything, and yet rose in the morning like I’d consumed an invigorating potion, with double the vim that I show on a weekday morning at work, I knew I was in love with it. This creature…

She Grabs You!

      I have always believed in the power of dreams. I dreamed in school, for example, snoozing in class and it saved me the uptake. I then dreamed straight through the laboratory periods at college and that did me a lot of good too; saved me the malodours. When my liaison with tigers…

Reverie at Tea

“Chug chug” rumbles the train. “Cluck cluck” protest the rails as the heavy wheels roll on them. “Right-ho, Jeeves” lies open beside. All is dark. There is a gentle zephyr. Restful. Nice, cool. There is a lull. Then there is light. Not bright, dim. Soothing, not intrusive. Somewhere in a forest. A bunch of stripes…

Laissez-faire

Miss Mirchani Female Cub – an ardent ambassador of laissez-faire She saw, she came and she sat.  Doesn’t exactly sound like a world-domineering conqueror’s magic trio of words, but that is exactly what makes cats, the equitable monarchs, so very special; they conquer the heart by merely being. After this Mirchani female cub’s initial enthusiasm…