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Essay writing -- The picnic I remember most


The Picnic I Remember Most

It was a pleasant summer morning and we – I, my parents and the members of another family – were huddled together under an azure sky. We were on a picnic at a private estate located in the suburbs of Thiruvananthapuram, with rubber plantations sprawling over 200 acres. On the one side, the estate borders a reserve forest with a rivulet flowing in between. In addition to the rubber plantations, the estate has separate stretches for growing bananas, jackfruits, mangoes and other tropical fruits. It also has an exclusive vegetable patch with a natural pond in the middle of the estate.
The estate has been handed down over generations and the 150-year-old quaint little cottage perched on the river bank bears testimony to this fact.
Also, it has ensured minimum human imprints on its pristine landscape and has managed to preserve Nature in all its glory. The estate is set amidst resplendent greenery with huge trees towering above us, creating a thick canopy overhead. This was an ideal picnic spot, as it literally looked like we were in the middle of a dense forest with fresh brown barks of trees and the refreshing green – the plants and bushes surrounding us. We decided to spread a sheet on what looked like a meadow in the estate and settled down. The ladies of both families set out with their cooking paraphernalia while kids set out to do a bit of poking around nearby as the elder gentlemen were setting up our picnic spot, I along with three friends, decided to walk along the border of the estate with slant rays of sunlight dancing on the ground. After exploring the majestic estate bungalow and its immediate environment, we went to chill out in the rivulet. The rivulet had tear like pure water that tinkled along the smooth pebbles visible underneath. It was a picturesque scene just like a dense rainforest taken right out of Animal Planet channel. The fact that the opposite shore housed a reserve forest with animals like wild boar and various birds added to our excitement. We immersed our feet into the cool water and played for a long time. Even though the water seemed to be gently flowing, in reality, it had strong undercurrents that felt like forceful jets of water, caressing our aching feet.
When we finally returned to our picnic spot, it was nearly lunch time. Our parents were relaxing in the gentle breeze and the warm sunshine; they were sharing anecdotes, and chatting. The aroma of Junagadh district with 1412.1 sq.km. protected area, which comprises 258.7 sq.km. as National Park and 1153.4 sq.km. as Sanctuary.
I saw the operation theatre of a lion where he was operated on or cured of its aliment. Then we started for a safari. Safari means being in a Wildlife Sanctuary when we are in a cage, and animals are freely moving in their own habitat. My father showed his I-card and finally we rode in a city ride along with forest personnel. We were very close to the pride of lions. It was here that I realized that innocent animals do not attack us unless we harm them. We even visited Somnath Temple, one of the Jyotirlingas of Lord Shiva.
The  lion is considered the king of the jungle. After I saw the lion, all my thoughts were in the direction of childhood school stories about the lion. Such as the story of devotee Prahlada and his father, the demon king Hiranyakashyapa. Prahlada had great devotion for Lord Vishnu. Lord Vishnu emerged in the form of lion and killed evil Hiranyakashyapa. This incarnation was called ‘Narsimha’ (man-lion), the half man with the head of a lion. ‘Nara’ means man and ‘Simha’ means lion. At Junagadh, there is a famous hill called Girnar famous for its forest coverage and a good habitat for lions. Basically the lion belongs to the cat family like the tiger and panther. The scientific name of lion is ‘Pantheras leo’. The forest staff received us very warmly. It was a good experience and I enjoyed very much interacting with them. At one juncture I thought that if I also study and work hard, one day I will also clear UPSC and be in a good position. As a result I will be able to have official trips.
In Sasan Gir, there was some Negro population (African tribals). I was surprised how they were staying in India. Then Jani uncle told me that a king had gifted a village to these people. We halted at forest guest house. I was addicted to TV at home, but after going there, I was more interested to go for a morning walk. I enjoyed having stroll in the morning there, because back home I would not have had that opportunity. To feel at one with Nature is really a very good experience. In fact, amidst natural environment we do not have to face the hectic schedule of urban living. Nature provides us with peace of mind and rejuvenates us with its serene atmosphere which has a soothing effect on our minds which get tired on account of complexities of our day–to–day existence. On our way back home, we saw six or seven huts. We were eager to know who they were, as we had not seen them before. When we enquired about them, we were told that the people were known as ‘Maldharis’. They have been living there for several generations. From their way of living, it was clear that they lived a very simple life. There were sings of poverty and it was very obvious that they were passing through very hard times. They were the children of Mother Nature who knew no evil designs of urban people. Though poor, they were quite content with the little God had gifted them. They did not seem like complaining even if drought had driven them poor, to lead their life in poverty. They took care of animals, birds, earned by selling milk and milk products.
The entire zoo and safari episode was marvelous. I was lucky and grateful to have a father like my father. We should always bond with nature. We are the sons/daughters of Mother Nature playing in her cradle. I actively participate in protection, preservation and conservation of nature.

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