Our small town where I grew up was blessed with the presence of a royal family. Not much of a royalty, more of a small time landlord. Locals addressed him to be the king or maharaja.
The approach to royal palace was paved and treelined. A canopy of green provided shade in summer months. On one side the thick shrubbery and a barrier covered the swimming pool from public. Though that did not stop young kids from street to sneak a peak. A guard on permanent duty would drive them away.
Financial condition of the kingdom was deteriorating. Government privy purse was not enough to maintain opulent lifestyle. A visible symbol of which was the swimming pool. Leaving aside trips abroad, extravagant parties and engaging in cultural festivities.
My grandfather was not exactly a subject of the king. Being a district collector himself, he was more like high ranking friendly representative of the government. I would often accompany my grandfather to the palace. One of the most interesting part of the visit, in addition to sumptuous princely snacks, was walking on this tree lined path.
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Photo Credit: Joy Pixley