Friday, September 24, 2010

Saplings being planted

Over the past ten days, more saplings have been planted. Those saplings unavailable with BBMP were procured by PNLIT from nurseries around Bangalore and Hosur.

Mr. Bhoja Shetty, 88yrs, ex-Conservator of Forests, Tamil Nadu, planted the Peepal in the viewing deck - it is a really tall sapling and we hope its roots catch. SBI Manager Mr Keshavan planted a Golden Laburnum. Also planted were trees on the island - one Cannon Ball, two each of Arjuna and Banni, and some grass. My grandmother who came for the tree planting on Jul 17 but left without being able to plant a tree, celebrated her 90th birthday on Sep 19 and she blessed our efforts at the lake by planting a Kadamba and a Badminton Ball tree in the front (towards BM arch). As the soil is not very good here, gardener Venkat Reddy dug to a good four feet, cleared the waste and mixed a lot of manure with the clean soil. Usha has created a small nursery under the coconut grove and has got planted two medicinal plants Simarumba Gluca. They can be replanted when they reach a decent height.

Jagadish (Forest officer deputed to BBMP) was at the lake yesterday and he is arranging for more saplings to be planted. Tree planting will continue through the week. Do get in touch with PNLIT reps (Usha, Padmini or Arathi) if you would like to plant one and we will arrange for it.

Photos here.

Bladder control

Today's Deccan Herald newspaper carries a photograph of a "labourer" relieving himself in front of the Commonwealth Games banner and bringing greater shame to the country. His economic status has nothing to do with his lack of bladder control. Why do Indian men and boys think that the whole world is one big urinal? How many times have we seen men park their cars, two wheelers and join the pedestrian to turn around and relieve themselves with absolutely no concern for those going behind them? Others might well be inspired to join them while the women will walk quickly past trying to pretend that these men don't exist. This outrageous display is seen quite frequently at our lake site. Men take a leak break near the fencing especially on the busy road leading to Brigade Millennium. What infuriated me even more and prompted me to write this was the recent sight of a morning walker relieving himself on our sprouting saplings! Indeed, I can see only one difference between such men and dogs - the number of legs.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Blessed rain and a tree story!

Yesterday we had ambitiously planted a peepal in the viewing deck, three golden laburnum on the avenue road, a cannon ball, two arjuna and two banni saplings on the island. Even as we watched, the dark clouds vanished and our hearts sank. At night though, it rained and gave us a little hope. Now, after a sunny day falls the blessed, blessed rain! For us, trustees especially, there can't be a more welcome sight! :-)

The cannon ball is the one tree I had always wanted to plant at the lake. Indeed, I wanted to revive the lake just to plant the cannon ball! There's an interesting mythological aspect to the Arjuna Terminalia. Acc. to mythology, Yashoda could not bear Krishna's pranks so she tied him to a stone mortar. Krishna did not let the weight hinder him. He simply dragged it along as he crawled. Going between two Arjuna trees, the mortar got stuck. When Krishna pulled it forward, the trees fell down and the two sons of Kubera, God of wealth, who had been cursed to change into Arjuna trees for their drunken ways were finally released.

A tree without a story is still very precious.

Ganesha Immersion

I cannot understand why people should pray to an idol for several days and then throw it in dirty water! Judging by the debris, this is what some 4 or 5 families had done at Puttenahalli Lake! Yesterday we saw a man walking purposefully towards the water front with a plastic bag in one hand and crash helmet in the other. We explained to him that we had buried a couple of dead dogs in the lake bed, one exactly in the place where he was going to "immerse" the idol. He scooted. Unfortunately, we will not always be present to save the devotees from the sin of abandoning their once beloved idol in dirty water. Forget the Ganesha disintegrating below, we could have saved ourselves the trouble of having to remove the plastic bags and flowers floating on the surface!