Delhiwale: Discovering a secret conclave of chir pines
You don’t have to go to hill stations to live your pine-scented dreams. Delhi, we find, has its own secret slice of Arcadia.delhi Updated: Oct 02, 2017 10:05 IST
We’ve all had those moments when we want to run away from everything.
Some Delhiwale board a flight to Europe without hesitation, while others board the Shatabdi towards the Himalayas.
Our own particular escape usually means heading straight to a hillock on the edge of Nehru Park. What we’re pining for is, well, a cluster of pines. And there they are — chir pines, on the park’s northwest edge.
Encountering these rare pines in the heart of the national capital helps us recall those high-altitude drives to hill stations such as Nainital. Their appearance means we’ve left the dusty plains far behind.
Also known as the Himalayan long needle pines, these trees are seen in the mountain ranges from Afghanistan all the way to Bhutan. In this Delhi park, they were probably planted as showpieces — surely, this hot dusty city can never be natural home to these trees.
You’ll find the pines at Nehru Park standing on one side of the grassy slopes, but their shadows extend far longer. It conjures a stroll in the chilly mountains.
The trees prove a perfect spot to romantic couples seeking privacy or to tired souls seeking solace. In the afternoons, often people from nearby offices come over with their lunch boxes.
Many others, like us, just lie on the slopes and peacefully navigate Twitter and Instagram. But, be careful, the soothing shadows can lull you to sleep within minutes.