I walk in the city by the river everyday to connect with nature. It grounds me, inspires me and sometimes it gives me insight to the problem I maybe mulling over. You can imagine what I was expecting with a walk in the rain forest, nothing less then communicating with God!
We were driven to the rain forest, which in Indian culture is a sign of disrespect if you are expecting to communicate with God. We should have walked to the rain forest to show humility to the God. But sometimes one just has to accept what the universe has planned.
Our car arrived and pulled to the side of the road. The vehicle must have startled strange looking creatures, with brightly coloured feathers and a lump on their throat, which looked like a goiter. They weren’t very pleased and strutted across the road looking indignant, without giving me a chance to take a friendly picture of them. Our guide said they were wild chickens.
The three of us, my brother, me and the guide got out of the car and slowly started to walk in the jungle. I asked the guide what we were likely to see and if there were any snakes around. He said we will see small mammals, like monkeys, cats, cougars; birds, butterflies and of course the snakes. He said there is higher probability of seeing a snake because it was windy and flapping of the leaves and branches disturb the snakes and makes them come out of their hiding places.
As I got over my fear of all the possible surprises waiting to reveal themselves, I started to notice a magical quality about the rain forest. The wind seemed to be playing with us, it was gentle and warm at time, then it would be noisy and melodic, pushy and encouraging, playful but yet powerful.
I also noticed the rain was like little droplets from a watering can, as though master gardener was watering his favorite part of the garden; carefully and gently. I enjoyed the sprinkling every few minutes, it left me feeling refreshed but without drenching me. My clothes didn’t feel wet and I covered my camera with a Safeway plastic bag (recycling!).
We came to a clearing in a sky; huge giant tree had fallen recently. It seemed as though the master gardener was clearing some space for a new growing bed. The light from the sun will stimulate new growth; seeds that had been waiting to germinate for years will have their chance to sprout.
The playful wind can be powerful when it needs to be, directed by a powerful hand to do its will. This was obvious when we saw the noble giant tree uprooted and broken, without the surrounding vegetation disturbed.
At other places the master gardener got more creative. He made some trees grow on top of another one. So he makes some seeds sprout on top of another tree; and as it grows with plenty of sunlight it sends its root system to the ground and eventually becoming independent of the first tree; as the new tree thrives the first tree gets strangulated and dies without the sun light.
We only saw monkeys, few birds and butterflies. Unfortunately, there were no snakes or spiders to be seen today.
I was not disappointed. I felt the magical force in the forest; the master gardener was no ordinary gardener. She was special and powerful.