I don’t see a single one now, and there used to be dozens of them, sunbirds, both the Loten’s and the Purple-rumped varieties. It is a sad state of affairs, this. No more inquisitive faces at the window, beaks tentatively knocking at the reflective glass, or Luci jumping up annoyed and letting loose a volley of barks at the cheek of the tiny thingamabobs. How dare you knock at the windows of my house, MY HOUSE, you winged pieces of fluff?!
No more cries of ‘Leave it! Leave it!’ or Bollywood style romancing on the electric cable, or fun-filled Chick’s Days Out on treetops with Cool Bird Parents (as opposed to Paranoid Human Parents) escorting an excited brood out to test the strength of their tiny wings and letting them be. With the garlic flower vine gone, the camellia pulled out by its roots and the tamarind tree chopped down, they seem to have gone in search of new, more verdant playgrounds.
To think only a couple of years back a friend had gone so far as to suggest I change my name to Sunbird Mohan seeing the number of pictures of sunbirds I flooded my timeline with on Facebook! Now memories are all I have left… unless, unless they get wind of the mossanda, the ixora and other favorites of theirs that I have planted with them in mind, then, may be then they’ll be back. In the meantime here’s a slideshow of some of the pictures I clicked in the good old days of them frolicking in the neighborhood.
©Shail Mohan 2016