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Ladakh - Planning The Trip

Over 2000 Km by road, in around 10 days. Stunning landscapes, wonderful people. That sums up our Ladakh trip. But how did it actually work? How did we make it happen? Read on to find out!  Leh, the capital of Ladakh , is accessible by air and road. Flying into Leh is the easiest, and time-saving option, while the road is the time consuming one, but with the added advantage of driving past some of the most beautiful landscapes in our country. Each option has much to recommend it, and we chose the road for just one reason – altitude sickness. Altitude sickness was one of my biggest concerns, since I suffer from motion-sickness. Yes, I do travel a lot, but that is despite my condition, and, over the years, have learnt how to handle it. I struggled with it when we visited Nathu-La in Sikkim, and wondered if I would be able to manage a week at the even higher altitudes that we would encounter in Ladakh. This was the reason we stuck to a basic plan, of only 9 days in Ladakh, though we

Birds from my Window - Black Kites

I see them all the time, soaring above the trees, their screech audible as I sit typing... or trying to type :) This is that time of the year when their screeches become shriller, and they build their nests atop the coconut trees. These are the Black Kites which nest in our colony, year after year...




These are birds of prey, and may seem to rule the skies. However, at least in our area, it is the crows which rule the roost, and make lives difficult not just for the smaller birds, but also the bigger ones like these. 



I already see the crows chasing the kites away, not allowing them to perch longer than a few minutes on the bigger trees, and I know the sight that will greet me in a few weeks... of the female kite perched on the coconut tree, near her nest, her shrill cries rousing me from my work, while the male kite tries to chase the crows away. 



For now, I indulge in the pleasure of seeing these birds often, perched in pairs atop trees and poles, calling out to each other, and soaring beautifully overhead, as I happily leave my work aside to watch them! 


Incidentally, do any of you know why these birds are called 'Black Kites'? I think they are more brown than black.. don't you? Someone told me once that its because they appear to be black from a distance, but that can be said of many birds, right?

I live in Mumbai, in a colony lucky enough to still have plenty of trees and open spaces. The best part of living here are the birds I see from my window, every single day. "Birds from my Window" is a series, where I regularly feature photos of birds I see from my home. To see all the posts in this series, click here

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