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The Wildlife Enthusiast- Light and Shade Challenge

I had always been fascinated with the animal and bird kingdom and devoured every trivia about them as a child, and stored the information in air-tight compartments in my memory. In the company of the (few) like-minded, these would be fished out duly and proudly presented during passionate discussions about the Beluga whales, African pythons or Bald eagles.

My ambitious friends, eventually, diverged out to bustling cities in pursuit of their own passions and dreams, leaving me alone in our childhood town, where pristine-white specks of fluffy clouds still dotted the clear blue skies that formed the canopy over the vast expanse of sun-soaked green and brown fields. My mind and heart were in constant conflict regarding my choice of profession and I could not decide whether to run after my passion and become a wild-life enthusiast, living the life of a nomad in the exciting forests and deep-seas or take up a more stable profession and live the expectations of my parents.

Photo prompt: Image courtesy of J-H Janssen taken from Wiki Commons

I settled for a job as a librarian-cum-manager in the only library we had for the entire town that housed about a 100 thousand people, including school and college-going students. The pay was meager but sufficient for my modest needs. The bonus was the access to the ocean of books and the solitude needed to dive and drown into the yellow, dog-eared pages on any topic under the sun. My picks were mostly books on photography, documentary making and of course anything that talked about the winged and four- legged creatures.

Living in the countryside meant a lot of family time and free-time to pursue hobbies. Where I lacked to give my family the creature comforts and luxury, I made it up by spending quality time, bonding with my better half and our four year old son. They glow of happiness on my wife’s face each time I made her breakfast on Sundays, or the depth of knowledge I could add to the infinite questions my son posed, filled my life with gratitude and contentment. I had saved up judiciously over the past several years and gifted myself a DSLR and spent precious time learning the nuances, and honing my skills in the picturesque local surroundings.  

They say, “When you wish with your whole heart, the universe conspires to let it come true”. Little did I know that my chance entry in a local photography and short video contest would open the doors to realizing my childhood dream; I bagged the first prize that offered a course in wildlife photography with one of the top universities in the state and a chance to work with the BBC wildlife professionals. I finally had a story to tell my son as he grew up: of a boy who never let his dreams die. It took a little detour, some compromises and a lot of courage in the heart but the flame was kept alive, that eventually was to become a raging inferno of proud accomplishments and fame.

Word Count: 499
Written in response to the photo prompt for the Light and Shade Challenge, 1st September 2014.


  1. He had a passion soo deep that destiny was on his side!!

    1. Thanks Red for being the first to read and comment :-)

  2. OMG, I could so relate to this right now. I hvae had my detours and currently looks like I might get that chance entry for my passion to become my profession. Yeah there are still a couple more hurdles left. But fingers crossed!

    Loved the way you had written this one, weaving in neatly :)

    1. Great, of luck! and thanks, glad you could relate :-)

  3. I can so relate to this right now. I have always had a desire to write and to do something with my writing. As far as we know, we only live once. Unless there is a heaven or a hell or a million lives to live after this one. So we have to live our dreams and do what we desire. We have to. We can't settle for anything less.

    Loved reading this. You write well.

    Ally :)

    1. True, Ally, we need to do what we must in this life itself. Thanks so much for stopping by and kind words :-)

  4. Absolutely.... the nature conspires to make our decisions become true, but the flame should be kept alive.....motivating post

    1. Definitely, even nature cannot help those who refuse to do their bit. Thanks a lot, Shellymona!

  5. This is so lovely. I was completely enthralled. Hooray for a happy ending! Dreams do come true. :)

    1. Thanks a lot for the read and appreciation, Ashley! :-)


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