Sit. Wait. Observe.
A pigeon is reminding me of these essential actions these days.
She has made a nest on the air conditioner that juts out of my bedroom window, overlooking the mumbai skyline. Here, she has laid two eggs. I have never seen pigeon eggs before this, and am surprised by how small they are, like oversized pebbles.
Atop the metal surface of my air conditioner, Madame pigeon sits in her nest, covering the eggs with the warmth of her body, like precious jewels to be secreted away from the world’s stares. Her feathers are a bit ruffled, as if to increase the surface area to envelope the precious life within the shells.
In the mornings, when I wake up, I look out my window to take in the first fresh view of Mumbai, and steal a sideways glance. I don’t look directly at her, because I think it scares her. So, I pretend I don’t exist for her when i make sure our eyes don’t meet. From the surreptitious glances, I can make her out. Her eyes are half closed, in security, and at times, an egg is visible from under her bosom. It looks blanketed, life being nurtured. She sits, patience emanating from her still body.
The pigeon is simply sitting. No movement, just there, covering the eggs. It is her purpose for now, for the immediate term. She sits as if that is all she is meant to be and do. I don’t sense any desire to be elsewhere, no boredom, no agitation that she is missing out on life going on somewhere else. She is not making extraneous sounds, she does not even move her head.
I understand why- there is no need for any of it.
When she does sense me, she acknowledges me, through a token gesture of moving away. Yet, I know that all she does is make as if she wants to get away without really going through the effort. We have built that much trust. I don’t scare her anymore, after these few weeks of coexisting. We are neighbours, looking out amiably at each other. I enjoy the knowledge that she is out there, a friend, sitting patiently, harmlessly, engaged in doing the best good that can be done, nurturing life.
I am looking forward to the eggs hatching, eager to see the little ones that spring forth into our world. Almost as if we’re family. I too wait. When I sit on my yoga mat, on this side of the window, I strive to just be there, on that spot. It is not easy, and I am humbled by my grey-coated feathered friend, who lets time go by so peacefully.