Instead of a tree growing in the open, today I have my Bonsai tree for you. We call it Wax but botanically it is the Ehretia microphylla or Fukien Tea. It belongs to the Boranginaceae family and I have seen it growing in the Andamans but its ‘cousin’ Ehretia laevis does grow in Pune. Its shiny small leaves make it a perfect species for Bonsai. My tree is a Shohin and the reason I post it today is that currently it is fruiting and is a big attraction for local birds.
Here is my tree in case you are curious… It is about 10″ tall.
Fruit on my Cherry Bonsai
We are a small group of Bonsai Moms and shower our trees with love and care. As you can see, the trees reciprocate by blooming and fruiting profusely which in turn is a feast for birds and insects. And a source of immense joy and satisfaction for us.
I am joining Parul in her ThursdayTreeLove blog hop. Do head over to see fantastic plants from around the world. Better still, join in.
Today, my tree is not really a tree.. its a woody perennial climber that grows huge thick trunks that almost look like tree trunks. Its very well known for its flowers and very common all over India. This non-native species has made itself at home and seems very happy judging by the profuse flowering we see.
Well settled as it were!
The flamboyant blossoms are not fragrant but are a sight to behold. Strangely its ‘petals’ are not really petals but bracts. Its fruit is said to be an achene but I have not yet seen one.
I am sure by now you have guessed which plant I refer to.
Yes…. Its the Bougainvillea!
The plant belongs to the Nyctaginaceae family and the Bougainvillea glabra is a common species B spectabilis is another.
The incessant whistle of the cooker woke her up. Her mind was whizzing as put her thoughts into perspective. Five years of hope and hard work that did not yield results.
Ever since leaving school, it had been her dream to become an IAS officer. With single minded dedication she had prepared for the exams. This was her last attempt at the coveted Civil Services entrance exams. She could not make it through the Prelims in her first attempt but progressively improved to reach the Interview stage by her third attempt.
She consoled herself that things could only become better. Yet the next two years saw her unable to ace the interviews. No amount of coaching or studying or motivation or morale boosting seemed to help cross the final hurdle. Time seemed to be running out as she would be reaching the age cut-off for her category.
She gave in to her parents demand and got married.
This final attempt was simply to appease her conscience that every opportunity had been taken up. She was unsure how her new family would react to her dream.
But she was in for a huge surprise.
He took complete control and let her concentrate on her goal. Not a single problem however trivial reached her. She gave all she had to this attempt. Whenever she did find some free time, both of them went for long walks. He introduced her to Classical music. Occasionally they played Rummy.
She felt calm and confident and optimistic. A new job awaited her.
“There’s coffee for you. I am making Alu Parantha for breakfast. Come on….the website should have the results soon.”
So saying her husband of one year opened the Laptop.
I am joining Vinitha in her Fiction Monday series using the Photo prompt.
The paper was blank but Meena’s mind was full of thoughts.. What should she write.. They had a Talk on making a Will and all residents of the Elder Home were encouraged to do so. She had been living here for the last ten years. All said and done she was fairly comfortable. Food, company, medical help and entertainment was quite good.
Nothing to complain really.
Meena had sizeable assets that logically had to be willed to avoid disputes later.
What should she do? Did her two sons deserve anything after the way they had shunted her off to this Home? Sonam was more worthy according to Meena.
She did not remember when she last met her sons. Of late even the video calls had stopped. She consoled herself, that her elder one was busy in his career.. after all he would soon be the MD of his company. The younger one had become a father for the second time and naturally all his free time was spent with his kids.
Sonam had been their neighbour and was the only one who visited regularly. Just chatting with her was the bright point of Meena’s week. They spoke about old times, movies, current happenings, her work. Sonam was to be a mother soon and they had booked a new flat. Meena planned to make some baby clothes for the little one.
Over the years, Sonam became the daughter she never had. The two had become quite close.
Her eyes were moist as she looked back at her life. Was blood thicker than water? Her confusion over, Meena picked up the pen and began writing her Will…
I am joining Vinitha in her Fiction Monday series using the above photo prompt and word prompt ‘remember’.
It lay there on the table, untouched for a week, a seemingly innocent envelope that had become a huge source of discomfort to her. Whoever said letters got lost in transit was obviously wrong, as this envelope had travelled five cities – each time redirected via multiple addresses in hope of finding her.
P Shrikant, Delhi was clearly the original sender of the letter.
The name triggered memories of a tightly shut past. Why would he contact her after six years?
Six years ago she got married and left Delhi and severed all connections.
With Shrikant and all her college friends.
The graduation years were marked by a host of activities and Shrikant was always with her. They studied together, travelled together, and competed for the top spot. She felt there was something beyond friendship between them but was not sure if Shrikant reciprocated. Neither of them spoke and going with her family’s flow she married the chosen Boy as soon as her final year exams were over.
A clean cut was the best to settle into her role as a wife.
She was happy and content now.
A hundred possibilities crossed her mind. What if he wanted to reconnect… Was she ready to go on that road?
Her husband was curious about her sudden agitation. Who is he? Why don’t you open it?
Finally, she did.
With trembling hands, she unfolded the single sheet.
The envelope held her BSc Degree that Shrikant had collected from the University and sent to her last known address.
I am joining Vinitha in her Fiction Monday series.
Today I have a Shrub instead of a Tree but I am sure all of you will enjoy this plant!
The title has been the spoiler so no surprises about the identity.
Yes, these delicate flowers are of the Henna or Mehendi plant. Botanically called Lawsonia inermis, it belongs to the Lythraceae family (that is the family of Crape Myrtles). It is a native and evergreen species.
In my childhood days, I remember it was grown as a hedge plant – I was told that the leaves are bitter hence goats, cows stayed away. However neighbourhood girls always managed to pluck the leaves, grind them on stones and apply the paste on our hands. The red colour was sufficient attraction.. the design was simple – a circle in the centre of the palm and capping the ends of the fingers. There was no thought of making designs.
I do remember we used to put a dot on the forehead.. this is one part where Mehendi does not colour the skin.. the story was if the forehead skin took up the colour then that girl would be a Queen!
No… mine never did colour!
Over the years, this way of putting Mehendi has ended.. readymade Mehendi cones have replaced ground leaves and designs are elaborate.
I am not complaining.. I love the colour and the fragrance that Mehendi leaves on our hands!
Priya had been thrilled to take up the Salon offer. Four sittings for the price of two. An unbelievable deal. At twice a month, she need not look for deals for their upcoming 30th anniversary. She could confidently accept compliments like “you look as if you were married yesterday!”
Appearances had unknowingly become a priority… and she had given in.. As an active member of the Tea party, Cocktail, Kitty circuit; she felt as if she had to look young 24X7.
But of late, this was becoming too strenuous. Suddenly the fine lines needed extra effort to be hidden and the greys appeared faster. Fatigue was setting in. In her fight with Age, the latter seemed to have the upper hand.
Priya was tempted to stop these frequent Salon visits but lacked the will power.
And then, out of the blue, the Lockdown happened. Everything was shut. Salons. Gyms. No parties either.
That meant her wonderful Salon discount could not be used.
After a few weeks of hesitation, she gathered courage to look at her reflection.
The fine lines and greys did not laugh at her.
When she smiled, they smiled back at her.
Suddenly the mirror became her friend as did Aging.
Hello! This is my seventh attempt at the April AtoZ blogging challenge and my was Experiences of a first time grandmother! Some sweet, salty moments and learnings! In case you have missed out, you can catch up here. Congratulations to all awesome bloggers who have completed this challenge. This year is unique as all of us around the world are facing the Covid19 pandemic.
Luckily, the Internet Gods were kind enough to allow me to schedule, post and comment on many posts. The AtoZ master list listed 510 participants and 89 bloggers revealed their theme on the #BlogchatterAtoZ Theme reveal and I saw 144 awseome posts on the first of April!! Obviously I still have a lot of catching up to do, something that is top of my to-do list.
I had delayed my decision to participate (its my seventh attempt) and once I did, I went into a frenzy of writing and managed to schedule all my posts much ahead of time. Y turned out to be most difficult and I was gasping for ideas till the last day! My posts were not image-intensive as it was more about my feelings and emotions and I did not make the effort of looking up memes to accompany the posts. Does it indicate a certain weariness? I cant say really!
Visitors to my blog were generous with their comments and I Thank all of you! Even if you have not commented! 😉
Across all the challenge, I saw the popular themes related to writing, books, travel, cooking and best of all, I found 4 blogs about babies/kids and one by a grandmother one about future grandkids!! Yay! I was not alone!!
The Lockdown has been extended in India as we try to accept an upcoming new normal in our lives.. that of always wearing a mask, carrying hand sanitisers. Greeting by way of Namaste and washing hands and feet have traditionally been a part of our lifestyle and I am glad the entire world is now adopting it.
I pray that this calamity ends soon. I hope all you of are healthy and safe in your part of the world.
Take care everyone! It was nice meeting you all and reading your thoughts. Lets stay in touch!
Stay Home! Stay Safe!
Here are links to my previous AtoZ attempts. 2013 Mixed Bag 2014 Exercising For Fitness 2015 Gardens of Pune 2016 Herbs 2018 Contemporary A to Z 2019 Caring for the Caregiver
Hello! Welcome to my seventh attempt at the April AtoZ blogging challenge. My theme this year is Experiences of a first time grandmother! Some sweet, salty moments and learnings! My posts are totally based on what I felt (may even border on rants) and are not meant to be a guide.
Zone Out When I look back, the day when Daughter went into Labour and next 2 months are a blur. On the one hand time seems to have flown yet all days were almost identical.
It was a period of intense happenings in our country.. major political decisions had been taken which naturally generated much discussion among friends and family.
I had Zoned Out. Switched off from the world.
No reading newspapers or watching News on TV. No time for Facebook or Twitter. All my time and energy was spent on the newborn and first time Mom who we were hosting!
These were precious moments that would occur only once in our lives..
And you know what, I realised I was not missed in the big world outside. Life went on – Trees blossomed, the Municipal Corporation functioned, the Stock Market fell and rose, roads got repaved … you get the drift..I did not miss them either..
In fact, I was so peaceful. So much so that I have decided to keep zoning out more often. Reduce the stress. Stay happy. Enjoy being a Grandma!!
Have you tried zoning out? I am sure my thoughts may cause a deja vu to some of you especially someone who has hosted a new born. I would love to hear from you! See you tomorrow folks! Here are links to my previous AtoZ attempts. 2013 Mixed Bag 2014 Exercising For Fitness 2015 Gardens of Pune 2016 Herbs 2018 Contemporary A to Z 2019 Caring for the Caregiver Disclaimer: My posts do mention some products or service providers but these are not sponsored and not meant to be an advertisement.