What would you call a trip where spotting and photographing herps (reptiles & amphibians) is the topmost priority? I was really looking forward to this trip and I wasn’t disappointed! Oh! Did I mention crocodiles? Well alright, it was just a baby croc (hell ya!!). Apart from that the we spotted seven snakes, notably, a baby Spectacled cobra( No, that’s not a typo, I really meant a COBRA!), Common Krait (one of the most dangerous snakes in India, to know more about the Big Four-Indian snakes read this) a wolf snake, common cat snake and the beautiful Checkered Keelback. We also spotted scores of bugs, beetles (a dung beetle that sadly was found out to be ‘foot’-kill in the morning), butterflies and moths. At the end gruelling treks and relaxing baths in the pool, handy tips on photography and continuous little bits of interaction with fellow participants (that included excellent photographers and also learners), and my weekend was complete and full of excitement!
This weekend, unlike my other lethargic, lazy non-productive weekends, often spent in office, was one of the best one’s I have had. I did something that I really loved – observing nature and photographing wildlife in their natural habitat without being scowled at by friends for not clicking enough of their portraits for Fb (To my friends reading the blog, no offence I do enjoy our little trips! How else will I get my profile pictures?). I have always been interested in nature photography. It helps me take a closer look at flowers, insects, birds and every other life form that is almost out of reach. Back in school I remember reading about dart frogs in the Amazon, utterly fascinated by their painted bodies and the deadly poison they carry, I got obsessed with frogs & toads. I dreamt (still do!) of walking on Gallapagos with its Giant tortoises or watching Komodo dragons going for the kill on the Komodo island. My favourite hang out during my school days was a quarry lake in Yeoor, Thane, Maharashtra, where my friends and I would often trek, even sometimes carrying our bicycles over our head. How I miss those treks!