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Ladakh Diaries Part 9: Lamayuru

Lamayuru is one of the most ancient monasteries in Ladakh, the oldest surviving structure dating to the 11 th century CE. What makes this monastery particularly fascinating, is its location, amidst what is today called the “moonscape”, for the spectacular natural rock formations, which truly are “out of the world”! As per legend , there once existed a huge lake in this area, populated only by the Nagas (serpents). It was prophesized that there would be a great monastery built here. This prophecy came true when the great acharya Naropa (756-1041 CE) arrived. He emptied the lake, meditated for many years inside a cave, and built the first monastery here. The present structure is a new one, built around the cave where Acharya Naropa is said to have meditated. This legend seems to fit well with the geological formations seen in the area, which suggest this was a paleo-lake, which disappeared around 1000 years ago. Lamayuru is about 130 km from Leh , and the Indus River flows along th

Wildlife on Marine Drive

Wildlife? In the midst of the city? I am sure all of you must be wondering what I am talking about. So, read on to see what I noticed last weekend when I spent hours on Marine Drive....

To begin with, I spent quite a lot of time sitting on Marine Drive, thinking about all the kinds of stuff the Forum was bringing up. The sea always has a calming effect on me, and I find myself thinking much straighter. The waves seem to talk to me, and I am at peace with myself and the world. All I usually notice when I am at Marine Drive are the waves and the horizon.... nothing else seems to matter. I usually even discount the scores of people walking, running, jogging, skating, cycling... along the promenade. 

However, this time, having too much time on my hands, I suppose, I started noticing all the kinds of things happening around me. While most of my attention was still riveted by the sea, I noticed a few people walking among the huge boulders and breakers at the sea shore. Curious, I watched them for a while, and only then realised that they were catching fishes and crabs! Only then did I notice that there were so many crabs all over the rocks! There were so many just over a small area that I could see from my place. When I inquired, I was told that these crabs were inedible, and weren't the ones being caught. Those chaps were trying to catch some edible crabs and other marine creatures which made their home along the most expensive area of Bombay!

While I didn't manage to get snaps of the creatures caught by the men,  I did manage to get quite a lot of shots of the crabs there... Take a look, and remember - each pic is of a different one!








On my third day, I was early, and reached the place when the tide was still out... the water was a bit farther than usual, and more of the crabs were on the rocks... And among them were some birds. I think this one is a sandpiper, but am not sure. There were many more such birds, but this was the only one which came close enough for me to take a photograph!



There were also a lot of sea gulls sitting on a rock. I wondered why I hadn't seen them before, and only after a while did I realize that the rock was seen only because the tide was low. As the tide began rising, the birds flew away to settle on a larger boulder a bit further away....



When the tide was fully in, all the seagulls were settled on a boulder too far away for me to get a clear pic. But here is what I could manage. You can just get an idea of the numbers. 


Comments

  1. Anu I also find sea to have a calming effect on me. And the wildlife too.

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  2. Anu I also find sea to have a calming effect on me. And the wildlife too.

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  3. Anu
    I love the seashore...
    there is something outwordly to sit by the shores and stare into that watery space
    I can just smell th esea through yr snaps...
    great

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  4. That is quite many wildlife around.

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  5. First time on your blog Anu and I am baffled at the quality of the writing as well as the pictures.....lovely! Who would have noticed this at Marine Drive on a leisurely walk or even a hectic speedy walk to the AirIndia building? It needs eyes to see...:)))
    Julia

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  6. the sea is but a drop of vastness of what really world is and it is, I think being a part of this vastness that puts the mind @ ease...


    great post.

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  7. @Mridula: Absolutely!!

    @Bhavesh : Thanks..

    @ssstoryteller: thanks so much...it just shows how much u liked my post.... glad to have posted it...

    @Indrani: Yes, surprisingly....

    @Julia: Thanks so much... I have been reading your blogs on Sulekha... but had no idea you were on blogger too... am so glad you liked mine....

    @muthu: so poetic! and true.....thanks

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  8. Nice seagulls photos.
    I think you should make a trip to Koodankulam near Tuticorin with your son.You would see the pink storks, egrets , snake birds and lot migratory birds there. the season has started and they would be there till July. Each and every house has a tree and they build their nests and you can watch them from close quarters.
    The people in the village do not make noise as they do not want any disturbance to these guests .Even little children while playing would not disturb these birds. Make a trip and I am sure Samhith would enjoy.We enjoyed the trip. There's also a guide to help you to identify the birds.

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  9. True. We forget that the sea is one wild place. There's a world out there underwater, feeding and dying on the stuff we empty into it.

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  10. @Chitra: thanks a lot..... for the comment as well as the info.... I do want to koodankulam, but somehow i have never gone towards thirunelveli side... and these days, we have too few holidays... so things are rather bad from the point of view of holidays... lets see when the call comes..

    @MP: very true....and most of us arent even aware of it.... off late, i have seen lots of cleanliness measures all over, but most people either are indifferent, or dont really care.... its sad to see well educated people walking along Marine Drive on their early morning routine, casually throwing a piece of paper, a wrapping of gum, etc on the ground, or simply into the sea.... and this is when the whole area is now full of dustbins.... makes me wild, but then, i contain my anger pointing it out to my son and telling him that NEVER should he do something so stupid! as of now, he listens, lets see for how long:)

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  11. Loved your blog.....good read!! It made me go back to the memories when I had been to Marine Drive, it was an amazing time spend looking at the crabs and birds and the feel of cool breeze on your face :)

    ReplyDelete

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