Wednesday, March 19, 2014

March plant diary

I know someone whose vocabulary bank is thin and he’d struggle to find the right words. We get his intention before he struggles to complete his sentence. When one has rich vocabulary, even if one starts a sentence ‘on the back foot’, to use a Cricket metaphor, one can come around and complete it well. But that person does not have that benefit.

Mine is also not rich when it comes to knowing names of plants, fruits, and animals. So, let me call this flower plant as Christmas flower. I wonder if that is the name. Last year, it bloomed during Christmas and gladdened our hearts. This year, we are planning to grow it even more. So, this was what we did when I went home for the weekend.

But let us first go further back to November 2013. It (Pic 1) was starting to bloom by late November.
Pic 1: November 27, 2013

On Christmas day, it was in full bloom (Pic 2). This was clicked by my brother as I was in the village to celebrate Christmas with parents. During Christmas, it becomes too cold for parents to come to Pfutsero. So, we'd split every year and someone will go to village to be with parents while some will stay at Pfutsero with aunty. Obviously Pfutsero is the preferred place; one reason is this flower.
Pic 2: December 25, 2013

Friends came by after church service with two brothers (Pic 3). The flower can be seen on the right corner of the photo.
And they had a good time (Pic 4).

Pic 4: Christmas 2013

So, this was what we did last weekend, my aunty and I. We pruned the plants, cut the dead branches (Pic 5). It should have been done in February actually.
Pic 5: Pruning

And we cut what we needed for next Christmas (Pic 6).
Pic 6: Pruned

We used black soil from around the house. Nothing special and no manure/fertilizer (pic 7)
Pic 7: Soil

Aunty had dug pits (Pic 8) to plant the flowers later. Unnecessary at the moment. But as always, she's ahead of schedule.
Pic 8: Pit

And this was how it looked like (Pic 9).
Pic 9: Nursery

Not to worry if the pot isn't handsome or the plants are too close. They will be transplanted when the rain starts.

The one in the bottom (Pic 9) is not Christmas flower. We observed that during March, there aren't many flowers. So, we decided to plant more evergreen plants for the 'lean' season. So, bottom pot is from this plant (Pic 10).
Pic 10: an evergreen plant

There are some flowers though, in March (Pic 11)
Pic 11: Flowers in March

This will be the hard thing to do till the rains come: watering (Pic 12)
Pic 12: Watering

And the sun set over the Japfu mountain range (Pic 13)
Pic 13: Sunset, 15th March 2014, 05:00 PM

Aunty and I, some moons ago (Pic 14)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

There is no end

No one can write a definitive or comprehensive piece on a topic. What one can do is contribute one’s bit in one’s lifetime. Some may contribute more, some less. But no one can put an end to a subject and say, ‘this is all there is to know on this topic’.
I am prevented to blog/write/speak on some topic because I feel I have not done enough research, or thinking. It is important to study and reflect before I speak or publish; but I realized that I must not be afraid if I don’t have the final word. I can never have that. A story may end with ‘and they lived happily ever after’. But we know that is not the end of the story. The story goes on.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

The day I boiled the blood of a biker

It was on the 8th of February 2014 and I was driving alone from Dimapur to Kohima. I was tired as I returned from Guwahati the same day.  I was sleepy as we slept late the previous night and had to wake up early to catch the train. So, I was in a hurry to return to Kohima for a bath and sleep. That is the background story when I came across this biker on the road.

It was a long straight road when I tried to overtake a truck. It was dusty driving behind it and I’ve been impatiently waiting for a chance. That was when I saw this bike coming towards me. The biker was honking, signalling not to overtake. But it was too late. But I have made up my mind to go for it, and I pushed forward. Due to the bad condition of the road, my estimation went wrong. The three of us - the truck, my car, and the bike - had to share the width of the road. The bike was forced out of the road and came to a halt. It was bumpy and I couldn’t speed away and had to slowly pass the biker and feel his wrath.

His face was burning and his blood was boiling. He was roaring like a wounded beast. There were a lot of R’s coming out from his mouth. ‘Rrrrrrrrr’, ‘Rrrrrrrr’. It was the full-blown anger of a man who had suffered disrespect. But I decided not to look him in the eye. I’m not sure if he noticed a tiny smile on the edge of my lips as I looked straight ahead and drove on. I looked at my mirror and he wasn’t gone. He stood there howling.

I felt sorry for him. I usually drive more carefully. And I don’t intend to do that again. He won’t have enjoyed the experience. But I am wondering why I kind of liked it. It must be his R’s.