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Aching Green

Saturday, April 02, 2011

When I started GreeNiche, it took many people by surprise. Plants?? Gardening?? Really?? It was not an entirely unexpected response. Plants hold no fashion quotient in today’s world. And gardening has become such an archaic concept - relegated to mummies and grandpas.

Growing up in a house with a sprawling courtyard was the best experience of my life. We had so many trees and plants – always singing, always calling me out to play with them. And I did. I spent my free time grooming them, caressing them with motherly affection, watering them like they were my thirsty little babies. And it was always a very soothing experience. When I was wrought with angst, I would dig my hands through the mud, weeding out the pestering stones, creating pathways and aalas to give them a better bed in which to sleep. When I was troubled, I would scrape my hands on the rough barks of the coconut or champa tree. Feeling each grain against my palms. Seeking answers. Imploring upon their wisdom. Many a Rabia they had seen grow up. Many a Rabia had they soothed and breathed new life into. And there are those moments when it all wells up in you but refuses to find its way out. All it takes is a slight caress from a rain-wet leaf, and it turns into those big fleshy soft arms that hold you until the storm has passed by.

rain clouds

Wet green. That’s my happy place. That always helps me calm down until I can find my way out. From wherever that may be. When I find someone with a broken or disturbed heart, I always suggest a getaway to a really green place. Green has the power to heal. Spiritually. Oceans are too turbulent. They are like lovers. They will take you to peaks of sparkling thrill and canyons of sadness within a few heartbeats. But greens … they are like your mother-figures - forgiving, and nourishing.

* * *

If you haven’t experienced the power of green – you are missing out on something special. Try it.

You don’t have to get all sappy about it. Just try it. Try walking into a green alcove anywhere near you. If you have a garden - try walking in it. Touch the plants. Run your fingers through the leaves. Ruffle the ones you can. Smile at the flowers. They will smile back. They can see you. You don’t have to talk to them. But know that it’s another world, that exists around you. A world you are mostly oblivious to, but it exists and breathes and sighs and laughs and cries just like yours. And it’s there for you when you can’t find anything else to accompany you in your quiet times. The oceans are too far away, the clubs are too crowded, but the greens are always there.

And if it has rained – don’t stay in. You really just have to walk out and breathe in the happiness of the trees around you. Laugh with them. Gaze at them. Feel their wet skin on your face. Shake your head and let them tickle you. And if you wait for a bit, they will shower a flower upon you in blessing.


If you live near a lake, don't ignore it. Walk down to it. Find a spot where the trees are leaning down into the still water. Reflecting their affection. Smiling with the lake the way long-together couples do. Meditate upon that green. Liquid or otherwise. Focus on the fresh scent. The slight coolness you will feel without fail. And if you try hard enough you will hear the whispers. If music stirs you then just plug in your ipod. Absorb all the greenness you can, close your eyes, and lose yourself in it all.

It’s that easy to go on a vacation.

It's that easy to heal.

You can always go back to your cynicism later.