This is probably my last entry in India. I check out tomorrow, spend the day hanging around the hotel, roomless, then head into work for 4 hours, before heading to the airport for a 2am flight HOME.

I explored the garden in the hotel again. Got shots of a weird nest hanging from one of the trees, stopped at the bookstore in the hotel and found out that the tree with the brown hanging fruits is a sausage tree (quelle surprise, not), caught photos and movie of the bird with the beautiful but weird song, got some sort of photos of the teeny toads, got a lot of photos of a real cool bird with a long beak, got a wasp-like insect eating part of a worm-like insect, and almost got killed by a giant bird. Went back to the book store, bought the book on flora in India (not only had I taken photos of several plants/trees in the book while I was here, but I had lots of photos from the San Francisco Botanical Garden with these plants as well), and bought 2 silk scarves.

Let me explain the incident with the giant bird. I was walking around the sausage tree when I heard cracking noise from above. A fairly large sized twig fell nearby. Then more, larger twigs (up to a foot long) fell, one catching me on the hand. Then I look up and a huge bird flew frantically away. I’m absolutely positive it had deliberately dumped a section of dead branches on me. I couldn’t catch him, but when I came around the other side of the hotel heading for my room, there he was. A big hawk. Got him (see photo).

After downloading more photos of the weird nest, I figured out that it actually consists exclusively of bugs. Around a million of them. I think they’re bees of some sort. It’s one of the creepiest things I’ve seen around here.

I discovered a new landscape photographer – Linde Waidhofer, who unapologetically works in color and in addition to having amazing photos, has a wonderful essay on the poetry of color here:

It’s now my last day here. I’m hanging in the lobby waiting for my buddy to wake so I can store my stuff in his room before we go to work.

I get to sit in A/C and look over the green garden, and read. When I checked out, they gave me a permission slip to get into the hotel’s private waiting room at the airport. Hallelujah! There’s a bar!! And it’ll be much less stressful and comfortable than waiting in the main airport. 5 star service rocks.

All I’ve been able to think about for last 3 days is going home. It’s like a tidal wave every time I think about it. I’ve really enjoyed the hotel here, but coming home at 3am so many dogs are out, and it’s just all painful. 12 hours from now I’ll be boarding. 16 or so later, I’m home. See you on the flip side.

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