Such a tiny, innocuous-looking pearl.
Glistening new and perched precariously on the down-slope of the freshest, limpest, thinnest leaf possible.
So fragile, it looks like the slightest shiver of a capricious breeze can send it careening down into oblivion.
But just what am I getting so ecstatic about? Let's rewind, shall we?
In my garden, I often run and stalk and chase after butterflies to get a photo of the exotic creatures who visit my garden. One of the most elusive of these 'winged rainbows' is the beautiful but very unimaginatively named Common Mormons.
Elusive? They're masters in the art of tantalising and then flitting away before I could get my camera fixed on them.
Mata Hari could've learnt a thing or two from them!
Just when I think I've got close enough for a good shot they're up and away again, their very flight hiccuping with laughter (at me, no doubt!) .
Rarely, very rarely, I manage to get a shot which though not good, still tells me why I find these creatures so fascinating. Now, if only they would sit still!
Finally, I did manage to get one to do just that! Not in my bigger garden but in my miniscule, chewing-gum- sized kitchen garden (which is just a fancy name for a collection of pots placed in the window box-grilles) in my apartment.
This lady would've waited as still as a rock . You see, I think I'm one of maybe just 2 people growing Curry Leaf plants in this apartment block.
And she needs them. Oh yes, she does!
I've got you now, my beauty!
Mine to watch at will. Your babies will soon be my models. Earth-bound, as much as you are flighty and elusive.
Mine to photograph and capture every single day till they break free with their fresh new wings. And still they'll pose for me for hours until their fragile wings are strong enough to shatter the strong grip of the earth. And they'll fly free ...
But this leaves me with one big dilemma... what'll I do when that tiny, innocent pearl turns into the world's biggest eating machine! Should I let them be and watch my Curry Leaf plant ruthlessly chewed and stripped bare of all foliage ?
Or should I squish them now before they're grown? Forget all my visions of watching these beautiful butterflies?
I'll tell you what I did ... this morning I got myself a new Curry Leaf plant !