Last light

Monsoon light is special. In many parts of the world you get spectacular sunsets and sunrises when there’s smoke and dust in the air. Here we can see that kind of special light because of small droplets of moisture suspended in the air. At least, we can see it at the change of season between grishma and varsha, summer and monsoon, before the sky is completely overcast.

The Family has been going for a walk by the sea to take photos. Being more of a couch potato, I take them from our balcony. The added advantage to this placement (add-vantage, to make a bad pun) is that I can get a view of the canopy below me, covered with the last flowers of the Flame of the Forest (Delonix regia).

In another neck of the woods a spreading banyan tree, the adult form of a strangler fig, has become host to a dense growth of epiphytic Pothos. I’ve never seen another specimen with such large leaves. In the fading light of the evening the green seems greener than usual.

There are other strange effects of light in this season. In the middle of the afternoon a dense mass of clouds can begin to obscure the sun, producing a watery light like the sunset. The sky and the sea can be beautiful now.


By I. J. Khanewala

I travel on work. When that gets too tiring then I relax by travelling for holidays. The holidays are pretty hectic, so I need to unwind by getting back home. But that means work.


    1. On the west coast of India it could start sometime at the end of May, and last till mid-September. As you move inland, it can start significantly later. There was a very nice old BBC documentary about it called “Chasing the Monsoon”.

      As for cause, it seems to be a topic of current research, but the broad outline that I understand is that it is due to a northward shift in trade winds caused by the heating over Asia in summer. The science in the documentary may be outdated.

      I found a readable account in


  1. What I wouldn’t give to have a Flame of the Forest in my own yard. The view from your balcony is stunning, and I can’t imagine that a walk by the sea would be prettier. The pothos is interesting. I have one growing next to my kitchen sink. I have never seen one growing wild.
    Thank you for sharing your home with us!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Ours started today in Prescott, AZ. I’ll post pictures tomorrow on Coffee Share. I never knew that there were monsoons in the United States until we started researching coming here. I wonder how similar they are to your monsoon season.

    Liked by 1 person

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