Thursday, September 26, 2019

Destruction of water sources and Madipakkam Lake visit

First time, drive through the Madipakkam, Pallikaranai (marshland) and Sholinganallur-Akkarai (the extended areas of south Chennai) road after 2015 flood and really fed up seeing how things changed around esp. multi-storeyed buildings on the places where some water bodies or marshes existed not long ago. I’m never against development but what kind of development or cost matters and destroying a water body or lake or marshes could never gift anything to society… everyone knows the importance of fresh water and preserving the ground table water could never compete with any other. The December 2015 had greatly flooded the entire areas mentioned above and countless were rescued through boats and uplifted by helicopters, as well food dropped from same and the main reason for submerge of houses up to first floor were because of  the construction on lakes and marshes. I had seen the transformation of these places from marsh grasslands to concrete grounds and had felt sad many a time how the water sources had turned to concrete blocks. It’s apparent that without government approval these are impossible… corruption, improper planning had made an unbalanced development and whatever reason we built in front us to justify, the nature rules out quite.

The Sunday outing had been disappointing seeing the disappearance of water bodies to concrete blocks and building and the only console was to see couple of lakes being dredged and waiting for the freshwater (though i doubt) from the upcoming monsoon. I stopped at the Madipakkam Lake view road for some time, and while having a coffee, I could see people relaxing in benches and taking walks on the paved public walk along the road and the lake. On the other side or east bank of the lake have rows of palms trees, which is a common sighting around the lakes in Tamil Nadu once, as these trees helps preserve ground water near and around lakes even during dry seasons.  The Madipakkam Lake is also dry right now, where kids playing cricket but I wish it was maintained clean.

From there we went past the Pallikaranai marsh and it was another place to put me upset. The weather on Sunday was pleasant, and just coming out of a noon shower (rain),   I enjoyed a super cool ride through rolled down windows. But it wasn’t same nearing the Pallikaranai marsh on Radial road, and we’re forced to close the windows quickly as it smelt very unpleasant. The very reason for the bad smell was, the Chennai dumping yard is located at the heart of marshland and I was shocked to see how speedily the garbage dump is swallowing the shallow marsh that’s home to many species of aquatic, fishes and birds. I have seen flamingos and pelicans in large numbers during migration season (October-May) and I would say, still it’s a best place for bird watch and I could see couple of watch towers but I really wonder how could one watch birds there when even standing for a minute is hazard to health! The Sholinganallur-Akkarai road passes through Buckingham channel is another spot I had seen birds and it’s an open landscape adjoining the channel is another groundwater preserving area sliding into the same pit.

Pallikaranai marshland rapidly filled up by garbage dump, creating a great environmental destructive 

Monday, September 23, 2019

RGB Monday

Walk by colors!

A rain scene by street... where a young mom and daughter walk the street by holding colorful umbrellas during a rainy day.

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Interesting skywatch

The weather has been different, pleasant and cool these days in Chennai with pretty sunny day times and gloomy evenings mostly end up with mild showering to thunderstorm. Sky watching has become interesting pastime these days from different cloud patterns emerging across the sky and built up of massive clouds make wonderful evening show on the west sky, which sometime glows to orange to pinkish. These days mostly, altocumulus sky pattern is visible through the day and many a days with such pattern brings showering in the evening. Fish scales or altocumulus, is   groups of puffy clouds traveling on a humid morning can mean afternoon thunderstorms. I really enjoy this pattern of weather or a mixed pattern of sunshine and rain or overcast sky by the end of evening, where either it rains or not it’s welcomed.

Last night and early morning there was widespread rain across Chennai or almost part of north Tamil Nadu, with Thiruvallur district (to north of Chennai)  received best of almost 140 mm of rain, which is unusual for this month. The rain in evening is quite a disturbance to commuters, who were returning from office, but everyone understands the urgency of rain and rain is must as all reservoirs around Chennai are dry. Here I share few sky shots captured from this month.

The balcony and a step outside home, from where I frequently skywatch… on the left corner in the image is the adopted dog Jack, sleeping from a mat.
Linking this post with Skywatch Friday and Good Fences by Gosia

Monday, September 16, 2019

Dog-tired Maya

Our pet dog Maya isn’t well for last few weeks and she looks exhausted all the time. She restrain herself from regular activities and was not even barking what she regularly do with house maid, guest, my therapist, insects… and started to wheeze after going through a medical check-up at govt. veterinary hospital. She did have wheezing problem already and if she barks intensely she experience cough and pursue wheezing which would take some time to settle or need some medication. We do remember she’s already aged 11 ½ and perhaps this should be age related despite her unchanged attitudes. She was injected medicine and put on drips for some time at the hospital and they took blood test and x-ray to examine her condition but once at home she started to wheeze immensely so she was took to the regular veterinary clinic where an immediate x-ray revealed congested lungs and swelling at a part of the heart. Dr injected her again after seeing the x-ray and next day she was taken to hospital and to get blood test report but gladly nothing alarming was defined instead a slight injury at intestine which caused the infection. She’s doing well and improving much right away and slowly backing to normal and barking her regular way but not that louder or energetic to make feel normal.
Picture shot from our vacation this year at uncle's woodhouse in mountains
Maya was brought up like a kid in our family and for last 11 ½ years she travelled all our lives through many up and downs and seldom departs us at few road trips. So it wasn’t easy to see her suffer, though we understand that we can’t expect her to be like earlier and her energy level and level of activities will strike as she almost lived her life. I hope and wish her further stay with us is at peace and happiness as long her destiny.

Friday, September 13, 2019

Ban banner culture

In recent times keeping flex banners has become a culture in Tamil Nadu, as well as in other states of India. I think keeping banners, as a promotion to a leader or party has started with emergence of Dravidian parties and what has been restrained to political and film scenario has went down all way to everything on their personal choice. From a child’s first year birthday to someone’s last rite and some even extend banners to commemorate the day of their demise. These days any small event has a promotional banner and what matters was all of these were kept on public roads as an obstacle to people. Though the personal banners are limited, and commercial banners do have regulations but where it creates trouble was when the rules aren’t followed.
credit: the hindu 
Today the entire state wake up to the news of Subashri, a 23 year old woman in Chennai died on spot when a wedding (political) banner placed on the median dropped on her and a lorry ran over her as she fell down on the road along her bike. Though this isn’t the first time an incident   happened alike, the accidents related to banners resonated many times in past and get mute followed by other. But this time the High court has voluntarily come forward to question the government related to banners and accidental death of Subashri and contempt the political parties and strictly warned on banners. This is the first time a great move held by the court against the govt. and the entire state stern opposite to banners. While she closed eyes (and let other tear) she opened the door of law where almost political parties had come forward to withdraw the banner culture, the public also has responsible to stop these banner culture from their personal celebrations as well

Saturday, September 07, 2019

Chameleon and Rain Tree

Perhaps it was afternoon when I casually came into the balcony; spot a chameleon taking nap on the branches of the Rain tree or Monkey pod (Albizia saman) grown opposite to our house on the roadside. The chameleon wasn’t taking nap quite but was on its usual slow pace push ups and I didn’t want to miss the chance, so quickly reached the camera and took few shots because the iPhone don’t zoom for that long.

Actually the Rain Tree was wrongly planted in our street or unaware of what tree was it when planted because there isn’t enough space for the widespread tree to grow in our street and the tree separated into two branches at few feet from the ground went growing wild in multiple directions to look distracting and blocking the wind. Though we managed to cut few branches of the tree sometime back it started too grown again to damage the look. Post winter the tree lost many of its thick pinnate leaves to leave ground yellow carpet but it hasn’t bloomed yet in white and pink.

Linking this post with SATURDAY CRITTERS

Wednesday, September 04, 2019

Ganesh Chaturthi at Home and Neighborhood

Home Ganesh
One of the prominent Indian festivals, Ganesh Chaturthi, celebrated on Monday and we too had a piece of the event at home. Dad bought Ganesh clay idol from the temporary street shops selling the idols and other elements for the worship and by the end of the noon things came to conclude and we had lunch with dishes offered for the Ganesh. The day was celebrated in front of the television and by the evening the clay idol was left in a bucket of water – the usual way of dissolving the idol that we are following for more than a decade.

The clay idol left in a bucket of water to dissolve
The clay idols are designed to drop in rivers by the time where rivers are flooded following the rains, but the climate change or delay in rains had left rivers dry during this season forced people to look after lakes, ponds and sea. Many in the neighbourhood, including my cousin drove to the beach to drop their idols but we found this method (dissolve in bucket of water and use it later for trees/plants) comfort and eco-friendly. I always keep this upfront to encourage others to follow this easy and need of the hour… but we can’t force unless they wake up. In the evening there was a cart procession from the street end Ganesh temple but as soon they started the rain interrupt and delayed the procession and the time it come over our place I had dinner, so couldn’t take proper photos and the one at below comes from dad.

The cart procession shot from the balcony - actually there's two Ganesh Temples in our area and only one took to street on Ganesh Chaturthi (monday)  and the other temple cart is postponed to Sunday.