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Parks hold a mirror to urban life

Parks hold a mirror to urban life
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Taking a stroll either in the mornings or in the evenings is a simple physical exercise that ensures good health.

Taking a stroll either in the mornings or in the evenings is a simple physical exercise that ensures good health.

Nowadays, people dwelling in cities are well conscious of health and most of them take to walking as a self-imposed habit to lead a healthy life .

I am too one of such habitual walkers. While I usually take morning walk in other seasons, I prefer evening stroll in summer season.

The only sprawling space available for city-dwellers like me is parks where I can walk freely , away from the urban din and bustle of suffocating, polluting ,traffic-jammed and roads, breathing in fresh air from plants and trees.

The municipal corporation park in our city just a is kilometre away from my house. To reach the park, I have to walk through the traffic chaos and incessant vehicular blaring.

But the moment I step into the park and find myself amidst the swaying trees and blooming plants with fountains of surging water I instantly feel refreshed.

In a serene state of mind, I embark on my rounds of walk, eyeing the varied spectacles unfolding before me in the park.

In the midst of the park, there is a huge statue of Mahatma Gandhi in sitting posture with his eyes shut as if he is in deep meditation and his spectacles sliding over his nose-bridge.

All around the statue, an array of cement benches are fixed on which rows of old men, mostly retired employees , are seated and talking ceaselessly about everything beneath the sun, ranging from their previous professions, their families to state and national politics and some of them are laughing uproariously at the jokes cracked by their colleagues.

Just a few feet away from these grey-haired folks are families seated on the carpet of green grass.

While men and women are watching, their children are playing there, laughing and screaming in bubbling joy.

At one corner of the park in the open space, a few young men are practicing physical exercises, sweating profusely .All along the paths in the park are middle-aged men, mostly clad in T-shirts and shorts, taking brisk walks quietly.

A group of youth, maybe, college students are sauntering tardily, being loquacious about happenings in their college, studies, teachers and exams.

At a far-end, amidst bushy plants, almost hidden from the preying eyes of the folks, is a lad and a lass, maybe, lovers, seated on the green grass, making whisperings of sweet nothings and chuckling.

Somewhere, beneath a huge mango tree, on a cement bench, is a lone young man clutching a book and poring over it so avidly, not caring to look around.

Indeed, it's all a variety of spectacles that unfurls before my eyes, the amazing diversity of urban life.

My evening-stroll in summer, apart from offering good physical exercise to my body and refreshing my spirits, provides me with an opportunity to watch and study a wide range of humanity around me in the park.

I realise that parks of cities in summer evenings are microcosm of urban life.

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