There was a time in my life when March meant school exams, and for years after, it came to mean that thing we all dread in tea, drought. The days are long gone when drought was the only obstacle to a splendid season ahead!
Every time the cold weather ended in the Dooars, it was dry and droughty. The longest drought that we experienced there lasted over 130 days. All the minor vegetation looked as if it was set to go up in flames.All except for the trees; the trees would put out leaf buds.
At this time of year, I long to visit Chalsa forest. There's a fragrance in the air that is as difficult to capture and hold as the fleeting season itself. Some traces of it linger under citrus trees, especially under the pomello and the 'curry patta'. We spent a lifetime in the Dooars, and its forests, rivers and hills will always be ‘ours’ to treasure in my mind.
Time to return to the here and now: Easter lilies are popping up to keep late dahlias and other cold weather blooms company and the grass is green!
We moved to Upper Assam two years ago. There's much here that is the same as the Dooars world, but the climate is completely different. Weather patterns have changed over the last decade quite drastically everywhere, but these are my observations of the moment.
We’ve had rainy spells around the end of the cold weather that have lasted for three to four days. Days and nights were never so cold in December. The sun drives winter back into hiding in cupboards with sweaters and knitting baskets for company.
The mighty river that flows at the garden's northern boundary is at the heart of all things here. Our skies – ‘Brahmaputra blue’ - are the deepest blue I’ve ever lived under. The nights skies are spectacular.
P.S. The night of the equinox was rainy with chilly winds.