This is the concluding part of a two part blog. Read the introductory part here.
The mercury has been soaring high and my little one and me, strangely enough, enjoy our walking tours. We both wake up early, get ready, ready to take on another day – the day that starts with us, the day that stays with us.
Purana Qila (Old Fort) on Mathura Rd is another walled fort with a calmer vibe than the Red Fort, and lots of green space and ruins to ramble around. There’s another boating lake in the former moat of the fort. Nearby is Delhi’s ramshackle but well-stocked National Zoological Gardens, which treats its animals fairly well and is a reliable winner with kids. Give her a camera, and unleash the wildlife or bird photographer in your kid! We ended up attending a Heritage and Photography combo walk at the Old Fort and next door zoo and ended up being enthralled with the stories surrounding the Fort and the amazing clicks we were able to take of the flora and fauna at the zoo, thanks to our awesome host – Parth.
We come back home, and she wants to share all of her treasure trove. It’s the world environment day she reminds me, tomorrow. Let’s do something mom, lets head out and explore our city in the light of the sun that shines for more than just the heat. She is inquisitive, she wants to read, but much rather than making her learn about the various trees and shrubs and herbs, I much rather take this opportunity to visit the Sunder Nursery (referred to us by Parth), spread across 70 acres and situated adjacent to Humayun’s Tomb. The nursery not only retails plants, seedlings, saplings and foliage but is a great place to spot some birds as well – a hidden paradise for birders and photographers without leaving the city! We practice the skills gained in our Old Fort Photowalk and end up with even more amazing clicks, buy some plants, get home, and sow seeds for a better tomorrow. My girl loves her new nursery, with just about a few marigolds and a budding rose! We look forward to water the sapling and discuss about nature over our breakfast around the new members of our family! She is even showing an aptitude for photography – simple tips on lighting and discovering moments and angles have opened up a beautiful world for my child.
She wants more and we book ourselves for a nature walk, it’s a walk we take around the Rose Garden. The nature lover in me, explodes with excitement. We walk, we talk, we learn, we hear stories about nothing more than trees, well just trees. To the normal person it might seem boring, but it is one of the most interesting walks we attended. The stories associated with the origin, medicinal values, anecdotes of the most common trees like the Amaltas, the Eucalyptus, the Neem and others has really tickled a bug within the botany graduate I am or was. I yearn to read more, to teach more, maybe even become a walk leader J
As the vacations are nearing the end, we start penning down our thoughts, we love the myriad experiences we got in Delhi. The Delhi Metro provides a fast link to Mehrauli, one of Delhi’s seven ancient cities, with spectacular and fascinating ruins at the Qutab Minar, the sprawling Mehrauli Archaeological Park and the adjacent Mehrauli Village. My girl dons the photographer’s hat, as we walk with a group of seven people, each of them having a different reason to attend a walk, and explore Delhi through the eyes of Moby, our friendly and chirpy walk leader. Her enthusiasm is infectious, even though we have over shot our two hour time limit, we are all raring to go!
And then there’s the Hauz Khas village, with a deer park, Mughal ruins, cute cafes and an ancient man-made lake. We wrap up our summer vacations exploring, experiencing Delhi our way, we learn heaps, but hello there is a familiar voice on the phone, her friend’s mother what about the holiday homework?