Sunday, July 13, 2014

Empty Nest And 'Harichitta Satya'

I will begin this post like a letter from/to a government department.

Ref : My last post about bird watching. 

Much before we went bird watching on the road to Diwar island (last Sunday) one of our tiny winged friends had been watching us keenly and based on the intelligence gathered by its tinier brain, concluded that the folks around were not foes and decided to use our front yard for the propagation of its tribe. 

Ref: another of my previous posts about ‘Ajja,’ the old man who comes to tend to the grubby shrubbery that we call our ‘garden’.

My wife was out in the garden during Ajja’s latest visit giving him instructions (which he was sure to ignore / misinterpret) and I heard an excited shout “Look here, there is a nest in the ‘Parijata’ plant.” (Parijata -  nyctanthes arbor-tristis).   I went out eagerly and there indeed was this beautifully sewn nest, built by sewing the leaves of the parijata plant with fibres to form a cup and then using the cup to hold the eco friendly building materials to make a cozy looking nest there. We have two tiny birds which visit our garden regularly, the sun bird and the tailor bird. When I explained the nest to one of my experienced bird watcher friend, he said that it must be a tailor bird nest.

This was the second nest that we were seeing in our garden. Few years back we had found the first nest in the other parijata plant close to the present one and with lot of excitement had followed the construction process, daily chores of the occupants, the stork bringing the eggs followed by the hatching and hatchlings, only to find, to our horror, the same activities being watched, with more interest, by the stealthy cat and the crooked necked crow. One gloomy morning we had found the nest empty and the parents flying around agitatedly. We do not know which of the higher ups in the eco system got the hatchlings but we were heartbroken.

So, I was trying to keep the excitement level low and was just observing the nest with detachment as advised by Lord Krishna in the ‘Bhagavadgita’. But this time the nest remained empty ever since we found it (nearly a month back) and we have not noticed any activities there.  I do not know who had built this nest, the husband or the wife but I can almost hear the other one chirping when it came to see the future home “What have you done? Look at the location. So close to the ground.  And on such a slender branch. This may not survive even a week in the rains. And any of our foes can just reach out from the road and pluck out our kids. I am sorry but we are not living here.”  Just like my wife who had expressed her opinion in no uncertain terms on seeing the fourth floor flat (without the facility of a lift) that I was intending to buy once.

The nest is exactly at the center of this picture
It is either that or the builder built the nest even before it could marry, hoping that the house may attract a partner, if his/her own charms were not enough to do the trick. Like what we used to hear about the bachelors in Mumbai.  An ownership of a small flat in one of the suburbs (or even the possession of a rented one )being a very strong point in the portfolio submitted to the parents of prospective brides.  But many a hopeful groom ultimately ended up with just the flat and not a wife, this point portrayed very nicely by Sri Purandara dasa  in one of his devotional songs ‘Harchitta satya’.   “Sudati makkaLa bhagya bayasodu nara chitta, maduvyaagadiruvudu harichittavayya”  (The hopeful human may will to have a wife and children- but Sri Hari’s, that is, god’s will, - that you remain a bachelor - prevails!). 

The Empty nest

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