I have four room-mates sharing my quarters. Lizards. They possess such high level of expertise in Tiger Leap that even Akshay Kumar has not been able to accomplish. That means, if some delicious looking insect comes within their field of view, they do not hesitate to take the jump in mid-air. Once in a while one of them would crawl on my laptop and peep from behind the screen as if trying to see what is going on there.
Sometimes I pick up my camera and click their photos in different poses. Initially it felt strange; however, when I took interest in them and looked closely and carefully, all fear and annoyance vanished. Now they are not afraid of me either, and can come very close to me, while I am holding the camera.
There is very dense vegetation — can be called a mini-forest — behind my quarters. Every evening plenty of insects and flies come inside, which serve the appetite of my room-mates. As a result, they have gained mass and achieved enormous proportions. I have been told that lizards cannot stand peacock feathers, so the latter are used to drive them away. But an equal number of people tell the contrary. I never tried it myself, so I cannot comment on the authenticity of this remedy.
I have a metal box in which very valuable books with ‘not to be moved’ tag are kept. The box is locked and has been lying in that location and position for years. Recently I opened the trunk and to a great surprise, found a big, fat lizard inside. Now, how did it get in? I have been scratching my head without getting any answer. It surely couldn’t have entered when I opened the box, because as soon as I lifted the lid, it had jumped off. Besides, there are no holes or gaps. On the other hand, had it entered at the time when I had closed the last time, it should have already died by now. Even if it had survived on the slight air that might have crept in from the edges, what did it eat? Surely there were no insects or flies inside. And what was it doing all this time? Indeed, a tougher austerity than even the most dedicated and devoted humans could endure. One thing is certain. Considering the books inside which gave it company, it must have gained profound knowledge of Tamil, Malayalam, Sanskrit, and Gujarati — the languages whose dictionaries and books are kept in the box. Only if I could understand a lizard’s voice…
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