Tuesday, May 31, 2011

"Thou shall love thy neighbour as Thyself"

It is a famous quote that people have used over many years. They have used it so often that seems like its true meaning has been forgotten.

It so happened that on Wednesday - 25th of May, Columbus, Indiana was under severe weather threat. In fact few tornadoes did make a touchdown and uprooted few trees, gave us a scare, we lost power etc etc.

What happens when calamity strikes ? Simple it brings people together, and so it did. In my 6 months of living in these apartments, I had never spoken to any of my neighbor until that fateful day.

I was sound asleep and I had no idea of what was going on outside. I was woken up by a thunderstorm and heat due to no power. I walked outside to breath some air, and guess what I found ? My whole neighborhood was out in the hallway preparing for the storm.

The real severity of the situation struck to me then. It was then that we all got together shared few memories and personal likes and dislikes, while monitoring the radar like hawks look at their prey. The best part was since most of my neighbors had prior experience with tornadoes, they knew exactly how to take the necessary precautions, and I followed like a child follows its parents.

While discussing our likes and dislikes, my neighbor mentioned that she was a musician. And myself being a connoisseur of music, hold musicians at a very high esteem. I was impressed at her talent, just by her experience with different 19th century instruments. She mentioned to me that Columbus, IN and Bloomington, IN are a short of heaven for music lovers.

All said and done, the sever weather passed-by, luckily there were no calamities. It was I feel a sign from God, to one show his fury, then show is mercy on those unharmed, and may be to bring people together. Under fear people seem to forget the petty differences of caste, creed, race and color.

So the friendship I made was solidified today, when I came home and found a gift from my neighbor hidden under my doormat. She has slipped in a CD of her compilation for me to hear. This was indeed a very harmonious gesture, and it really goes beyond everything else. I sure am not materialistic but the CD she left was something very melodious.

It was her compilation, something in which she must have put immense hard-work and commitment. And she decided to share it with me. I am so glad that in this world where humanity is taking a beating, there exist people who still value it. They rise above everything else and prove it to you by their behavior that not all is lost.

I will treasure this note and the gift for lifetime.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Memorable Quotes from the Hungry Tide - 4

Age teaches you to recognize the signs of death. You do not see them suddenly; you become aware of them very slowly over a period of many many years.

Egalitarian - someone who believes that every person is equal and they deserve equal rights and opportunities.

Dalliance - a casual romantic or sexual relationship.

"You're all the same you men. Who can blame the tigers when predators like you pass for human beings?"

"He says when a tiger comes into a human settlement, it's because it wants to die."

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Memorable Quotes from the Hungry Tide - 3

"For if you compared it to the ways in which the dolphin's echoes mirrored the world, speech was only a bag of tricks that fooled you into believing that you could see through the eyes of another being."

This quote from the Hungry Tide, increased my curiosity about what was so special about a dolphin's echo. After googling it I found that there is a phenomenon called Dolphin's Echolocation ( the location of an object by its echoes). A Dolphin can locate it prey using her echoes. Pretty neat, hence her echoes are nothing but a bag of tricks.

You can find more information here http://www.inkokomo.com/dolphin/echolocation.html

And from this video below from YouTube, it was evident that Piya in the book for searching for Orcella dolphins in the Sundarbans - where the ganges breakdown into tributaries and join the bay of bengal. And in this video the researchers too are referring to the special breed of dolphins found in the ganges.

Memorable Quotes from the Hungry Tide - 2

replete = full as in eaten to heart's content.

scuttling - destroying a ship by creating a hole in it to let the water enter

The sight made Piya laugh: so this is where the word 'crabby' came from , a creature so stubborn that it would rather be captured than let go.

abed - in bed - Nirmal talking abt his retirement
beset - trouble or threaten persistently - Nirmal talking abt the thought of retirement would trouble and threaten him persistently .
despondency - a state of low spirit caused by loss of hope or courage.

The true tragedy of a routinely spent life is that its wastefulness does not become apparent till its too late.

Someone who has stayed in the same job for thirty years becomes like mildew on the wall - everybody longs to see it wither in the bright light of a new day.

For if you compared it to the ways in which dolphin's echoes mirrored the world, speech was only a bag of tricks that fooled you into believing that you could see through the eyes of another being.

Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Memorable Quotes from the Hungry Tide - 1

There is no prettiness here to invite the strangers in : yet to the world at large this archipelago is known as the Sundarbans, which means "the beautiful forest."

To look upon this strange parturition, midwifed by the moon, is to know the name "tide country" is not just right but necessary.

Words and situations from the Hungry Tide by Amitav Ghosh

restitution - payment of some sort .....used in the book when Nirmal mentions to Kanai that since the Bay of Bengal has given so much to the Sundarbans...they need to take something back .....and hence the Bay is looking for a restitution.

androgyny - showing characteristics of both male and female....used in the book when Kanai mentions a man dressed up funnily at the railway stations.

parturition - the process of giving birth...mentioned when Kanai speaks of the Ganges giving birth to numerous islands ....

demur - raise doubts or fear.....When Piya is scared of the various boat-wallas trying to skin money of her.

obsequious - Obedient or attentive to an excessive or servile degree...initially the guard from the forest department behaved obsequiously later he became extremely officious .

bandolier - A shoulder-belt with loops or pockets for cartridges.

desultory - Lacking a plan, purpose, or enthusiasm...when Piya was searching for a boat to hire ...her process was entirely unplanned ....

mime - The theatrical technique of suggesting action, character, or emotion without words, using only gesture, expression, and movement.

pantomime - excessive mime

gesticulate - Use gestures, esp. dramatic ones, instead of speaking or to emphasize one's words