Tuesday, February 25, 2014
During Non-Month in school, Tanu and Sharad had planned a trip to Chennai to go on a turtle walk. We would spend one whole night on the beach. Unfortunately the trip was to happen on a weekend when I was not in school. Later I learned that Tanu had not been able to get tickets that weekend and therefore had to postpone the trip. Though it was not in her control I thanked Tanu sincerely for not finding tickets.
Finally on the day of the trip we got into the train and ‘expressed’ our way to Chennai. I was not excited like one would expect to be but instead I was nervous. A night long walk on the beach didn’t seem very comfortable.
After a long seven hour journey the train halted in Chennai and we disembarked, much I think to everyone’s relief. We took a bus to the auto stand where some heated arguments managed to get us a ride to the beach.
Our auto driver (the one who drove me and some other students) seemed slightly drunk and also very, very hyper. He drove like some racecar and after all his stunts, landed us up at the wrong beach.
Two phone calls later we arrived at the correct location.
The gentle sea breeze embraced us and gave us a cool (instead of warm) welcome, and the sound of the waves crashing upon the shore was very comforting.
Arun, one of the people in charge of the walk started off by giving a long but (at least to me) extremely inspiring talk. Though most of it was questions and answers, the conversation revolved around turtle conservation and global warming. A subject which I would like to go head deep into, to protect nature and this amazing planet!
The walk started slowly but picked up pace during the process. During the walk we saw a dead eel followed by the sighting of a dead, painfully bleeding turtle. We also saw three turtle nests, the first of which had 120 eggs! Arun sadly said that only one in four eggs would hatch and only one in a thousand that did hatch would live to adulthood. A very sad phenomenon.
We ended up spotting three dead turtles (one of which I missed) and not a single live one. At the end of the walk, there was an option to walk another one kilometer to the hatchery. In the hope of seeing an egg hatch I went but sadly I did not see anything, though the walk was good.
The whole experience in general was a very teaching and inspiring one, I learned to be more sensitive (not that I wasn’t) and compassionate.
Especially toward nature.
Thank you, to Sharad and Tanu who took us there and to Arun and all the others who I didn’t get to meet or thank!