When Nature becomes our Teacher


When was the last time you actually watched a sunrise? Not ‘seen it’. Watched it.

Well, I did it last weekend. Returning at 3.30 AM after night shift I often find it difficult to sleep. It takes me an hour and a half to finally fall asleep, until then I keep tossing and turning in my bed. Sometimes even my playlist of slow songs doesn’t help. Last Friday (technically Saturday) as I was trying to sleep, I suddenly noticed a faint light coming through the window. I checked the time. It was 5.58 AM! At first I cursed myself, straightened out the pillow, lay down on it and closed my eyes. Then I had an idea!

‘You ain’t gonna get this chance again.’ I told myself. ‘It’s anyway Saturday. So go watch the sunrise, you idiot!’ I went up to the terrace, smiled as the cool breeze brushed over my face. Birds chirping, very little noise of vehicles, early risers taking their morning walks… The scene was just perfect! I started humming to myself and wondered why I don’t do this more often. During my school and college days I used to get up early in the morning. Not to watch the sunrise, but to get an early start. And now it’s flipped 180 degrees. I’m up till late in the night, and sleep during the day. Ah well, I guess every experience teaches us something. And what has working late nights taught me? For one, I learnt to appreciate even the little things in life such as waking up early.

And then it began. I watched, as the sun rose above the horizon inch by inch. I didn’t want to miss even a single moment, so I did not look away for a whole minute. It was just too beautiful to miss. Growing up in a coastal city, I had seen a lot of sunsets at the beach. But this was the first time I was watching a sunrise, and I found myself smiling. And then, just like that, it was over. I could see it as a complete circle above the horizon. I continued to look for a little while longer. But then it got warmer and brighter. I had to look away. Well, it was good while it lasted.

Then the geek in me started thinking. ‘Wait a minute! The sun wasn’t rising at all! It was the Earth which was rotating on its axis and revolving around the Sun. That means I just witnessed the Earth’s motion around the Sun. So basically, the work is done by the Earth and yet people only praise the beauty of the Sun. Weird!’

So is life. Many a time we fail to give credit to some people for their work. A simple example. How often do we greet the security guard at our office gate as they check our bags and ID card? Do we thank the people who keep our washrooms clean and usable at all times? When was the last time we smiled at the cab driver who drives us safely to and from the office? Not that they’re doing it for the appreciation. But hey, we are not gonna lose anything if we spare two seconds to smile and say Thank You, right?

Well, I do follow some of those habits and I decided to continue those, even if I do not receive a smile in return. Having given myself these thoughts to ponder over, I returned to my room. I may have wasted half of my Saturday sleeping, but it was one hell of a way to start my weekend!



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