Its 5.30 am. The weather still carrying the heaviness of last night’s rain. Like an untamed wild horse, our gypsy geared and skidded through the bumpy and slushy terrain. Our tribal spotter and driver, Mr. Mahesh, seemed as relaxed as a cowboy as he made his way through the mist covered morning…
Hundreds of cheetal are seen enjoying the dew filled grass. Our guests now settle in at the back of the Gypsy, enjoying the cool forest morning of the monsoons. The magic touch of the shower from last night can be seen everywhere, a group of peafowl and a happy family of wild boars stand by the side and watch our vehicle pass before we enter our paradise; an open savanna type grassland with dispersed trees…a spot where we usually sight herds of elephants. But little did we know that today something even more breathtaking was awaiting us. Fascinating and magnificent, the perfect killing machine, shaped by both God and evolution! His eyes glittered in the morning rays and he couldn’t escape from Mahesh’s sight. He came slowly out of the thickets, hardly disturbed by our presence and seemed seriously engrossed in something. After a close examination of the new guests that had entered his space, his focus moved to the tree and he sprayed at it, to show Mahesh that this is his territory and you may enter at your own risk! 🙂
He then slowly turned and disappeared into the jungle. All the while our guests not only had their eyes glued onto him, our beloved Royal Bengal Tiger of Mudumalai, but also had their camera glued on, recording a moment that would leave an everlasting imprint of its royalty onto our hearts – a true date with Indian Royalty!
Dear Mr. Blake, you are right, “Tiger Tiger burning bright, in the forest of the…what immortal hand or eye dare frame thy fearful symmetry”!