9 April 2021
Be it material or spiritual attainments, it’s natural for us to seek the best. And when it comes to viewing highly elusive creatures such as birds, we earthlings strive for the closest distance to catch a glimpse of them.
At the “King of The Skies,” show at Jurong Bird Park yesterday, we had been assigned seats that would bring us up close and personal with raptors, vultures, eagles and kites.
But noting my walking cane, the young usher kindly suggested that my friends and I took the upper tier of the spectator stand. The “good” seats would require us to descend a number of steps.
I took the usher’s advice and my friends gamely gave up their choice seats to join me.
And this was how we came to settle under a beautiful tree whose emerald branches laced the sky of azure blue.
I remember thanking the tree silently as I took pictures of my friends smiling against his verdant backdrop.
When the show started, one by one, the Brahminy Kite, which was one of my friends’ favourite birds, flew from their handlers and came to perch on the branches right above us!
Raising my face, I saw the underbelly of the Brahminy Kite. Holding my breath, my eyes drank in the distinct markings of warm browns, black linings and pristine white torso of the creature.
We couldn’t have gotten better seats than these, I screamed inwardly.
Over the years, my weakened leg has taught me to see clearly and not to feel bitter or shortchanged by the limitations that come along with it. Speed is important, but it’s not the only thing or everything to worthwhile living.
As the ancient poet Rumi says, “What you seek is seeking you,” and in my case, regardless of physical barriers, has happened to me many times before, and yesterday at the Jurong Bird Park again.
And because I’ve experienced the grace of this particular Rumi wisdom, extremes such as the fastest, and the latest or even the best cannot make me feel unseated easily.