City Nature - Floss-Silk Trees in Blossom, Kamani Auditorium & Elsewhere

City Nature – Floss-Silk Trees in Blossom, Kamani Auditorium & Elsewhere

Consolation of winter [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The pink of the flower is as boldly surkh (ruddy) as the jama (coat) that Shahjahan is depicted wearing in a famous portrait he commissioned to artist Chitarman. As Delhi-NCR…

City Life - Winter Pollution, Everywhere in Delhi

City Life – Winter Pollution, Everywhere in Delhi

Mother, daughter and smog. [By Mayank Austen Soofi] This smoggy morning, the throat is wheezy, the eyes are burning, and the head is throbbing to a very mild mysterious ache. Engineering graduate Paridhi Narayan Singh (left) is standing with her…

City Nature - Saptaparni Tree in Bloom, India International Center & Other Places

City Nature – Saptaparni Tree in Bloom, India International Center & Other Places

Devil’s shrub [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] Silence, all. Suddenly—plop! Something falls. A bunch of pale green flowers is lying on the ground, here outside an old bungalow in Gurugram’s New Railway Road, close to pavement tailor Muhammed…

City Season - Sky Watching, Gurgaon

City Season – Sky Watching, Gurgaon

Season’s scenes [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The sleek Rapid Metro train is sliding noiselessly along the elevated tracks. The glass windows of the high-rises are gleaming under the noonday sun. And tufts of greying clouds are wafting…

City Season - Cloud Watching, Around Town

City Season – Cloud Watching, Around Town

Cloud spotter’s guide. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The sky upon a rutty lane in Noida’s Sector 15A splintered into hundreds of cumulus clouds, as if the milk curdled. While in Hazrat Nizamuddin East, the historic Humayun Tomb…

City Season - Monsoon Spaces, Around Town

City Season – Monsoon Spaces, Around Town

Rain-drenched city. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] “A little tap on the window-pane, as though something had struck it, followed by a plentiful light falling sound, as of grains of sand being sprinkled from a window overhead, gradually…

City Season - Amaltas in Blossom, Lajpat Nagar

City Season – Amaltas in Blossom, Lajpat Nagar

Summer’s gift. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] The park has no grass. Tailor “master” Mehmood Alam enters this dull brown earth, lays out a mat towards the west and starts to offer his evening prayers. The scene is…

City Season - Gulmohar Sightings, Gulmohar Park & Elsewhere

City Season – Gulmohar Sightings, Gulmohar Park & Elsewhere

Red rising. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] This tree has such a bad timing. Each year, as the gulmohar begins to bloom, a more forceful distraction arrives: The bystander gets dazzled by the yellow blossoming of the Amaltas….

City Season - New Leaves of Pilkhan Trees, Deer Park and Elsewhere

City Season – New Leaves of Pilkhan Trees, Deer Park and Elsewhere

Spring scenario. [Text and photos by Mayank Austen Soofi] How can there be so much disconcert in the world when pilkhan is dressed in new leaves? These are not a singular shade of red. Some leaves have a burnished tinge,…

City Season - Bougainvillaea Watching, Indirapuram & Other Places

City Season – Bougainvillaea Watching, Indirapuram & Other Places

A sight most surreal. [Text and photo by Mayank Austen Soofi] You really have to be in this place in Ghaziabad to believe it. Even if your home is as far away as in Gurgaon, or Faridabad, or Uttam Nagar….