As a child, Baiji Lal Princess Padmaja Kumari of Jodhpur was curious and precocious, busy as a bee chasing wild rabbits and feeding peacocks. Everyone who knew her, had a strong inkling that she would be happiest when left in the lap of Mother Nature.
Whilst growing up, Baiji Lal would love to curl up under a tree or next to her Grandma at bedtime, reading from Kipling’s Jungle Book. And so, good ol’ Baloo and Bagheera were her favourite companions.
A favourite CD with the song ‘Bare Necessities’ would always be playing as she hummed along, “Look for the bare necessities, the simple bare necessities…Forget about your worries and your strife! I mean the bare necessities, Old Mother Nature’s recipes-that bring the bare necessities of life!”
Years later, when she would inherit the tract of land which was part wetland, part desert scrub and jungle thrown in for good measure, she would christen it ‘Bagheera’- after sighting a wild, green eyed feline which stared right into her eyes in the wintry dusk. “This is Bagheera’s Camp; it rightfully belongs to the wild cat. I’m just a passer-by, who has stopped in the shade and warmth of his hospitality.”