Tuesday, December 25, 2007

The great Bengali detective

“…..Shamasta jibantai geometry( the entire life is about geometry).”

In the 1970s, this line had been penned by the legendary Satyajit Ray. He had expressed this thought through the voice of Prodosh C. Mitter, one of his best created characters. Prodosh C. Mitter , alias Feluda, has remained the favourite private investigator of Bengalis for more than three decades. Just like everyone else, he is my favourite too. He might be called the Bengali Sherlock Holmes.

Feluda continues to rule our hearts even today. He was introduced to the world in the book , ‘Feludar goyendagiri’(Feluda’s investigations). After that, Satyajit Ray wrote 37 more Feluda adventures. Among them, the most famous ones are ‘Shonar Kella’( Golden Fort), ‘Joy Baba Felunath’, ‘Gangtok-e Gondogol’( Trouble in Gangtok), ‘Jata Kanda Kathmandu-te’( All happenings at Kathmandu), ‘Badshahi Aangti’( Badshahi Ring) and ‘Kailashe Kelenkari’(Mishaps at Kailash). In all these stories, Feluda’s intelligenge, bravery, skill of disguising himself and his general knowledge has impressed us and has made us love him and respect him from the bottom of our hearts. The way Feluda keeps his mind cool even in the worst situations deserves special mention. Along with his cousin Topshe and his friend Lalmohan Ganguly( popularly known as Jatayu), Feluda has traveled from Jaisalmer to Varanasi to Bombay. He even traveled to London once.

Feluda films are also a real treat. Satyajit Ray himself directed two Feluda movies (based on the stories ‘Shonar Kella’ and ‘Joy Baba Felunath’) which entertained and continues to entertain everyone from 9 to 90. In these two movies, Soumitra Chatterjee excellently portrayed the role of Feluda and Santosh Dutta ‘s Jatayu will remain unmatched as long as humanity exists. After that, Satyajit Ray’s son Sandip Ray directed a few Feluda telefilms on the small screen. Then, in 2003, Feluda once again came alive on the big screen with the movie ‘Bombaiyer Bombete’(Mumbai’s miscreants). Sabyasachi Chakraborty as Feluda was very impressive too. Parambrata Chatterjee played the role of Topshe and gave a quite satisfactory performance. But, Bibhu Bhattacharya as Jatayu was not that good. As I said before, nobody can make us laugh as Santosh Dutta did.

Now, in 2007, Feluda is back once more on the big screen with ‘Kailashe Kelenkari’. And, on the auspicious occasion of Christmas, I’ll be watching it with my parents . I’m really excited. The cast is the same as ‘Bombaiyer Bombete’.

Merry Christmas to all of you!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007


Here I go again! I will again be talking about my school life, but just couldn’t help it this time. Day after tomorrow, I’ll be spending the last normal working day at school with my present group of friends. After that, we’ll be returning to school to sit for the Selection exam in January and the ICSE exam in February. And, after the exams, all of us will never study together in the same school. Different people obviously have different targets. I have always said that my friends did not share all secrets with me. There were certain things, which they never felt like sharing with me. Sometimes, I felt really lonely. Yet, during the last 12 years that I have spent with them, many such moments have also come when I have enjoyed myself a lot with them. Those memories will remain some of the most cherished ones of my life. So, after 12 years, I am feeling very nostalgic.

Our class (i.e, the present Class 10 C) was always the best class of the entire school. It was the best-behaved class of the school even if it was academically average. The teachers used to praise us so much. By the time we were in Class 7, we had begun to set an example for the entire school. And, Class 7 was so much fun! Our classroom was on the terrace. So, we could play everyday. Besides, someone discovered this very exciting game called hand cricket. There was a stage in Class 7 when, in the absence of teachers in the class, everyone used to play this game. Big matches were held. Class 7 was academically quite easy. So, we had a great time. Also, we had the best Class Teacher, Mrs. Shaluk Banerjee. Shaluk Ma’am is the perfect teacher. She is such a teacher who is there in every student’s dreams. And, she is so beautiful! She has been taking our English classes since Class 6.

Class 8 was also quite fun. An exhibition was held just before the Christmas vacation and we had a great time preparing for it. But, things started deteriorating from Class 9. Our class was suddenly flooded with couples! So many boys and girls became fond of each other overnight and started proposing to each other. I suddenly began to notice certain students talking very seriously about something and stopping as soon as they realized that I was trying to participate too. At first, I used to feel very bad. But, once I understood what their topics of discussion were, I made no attempts to interrupt their animated discussions. I was least interested in numerous rumors which ere being created day by day. It’s not as though they would never talk to me. I still managed to remain on very good terms with Sritama and Mekhala. They still used to think that I was a very good friend.

The situation worsened further in Class 10. Our class completely lost its reputation of being the best class of the school. We had obviously lost a lot of reputation in Class 9, but in Class 10 it became horrible. But, my relationship with some other friends improved. Soorma, Sukanya, Gourav and Arittra became friendlier with me. Sritama and Mekhala were, of course, always there. But, the teachers have become fed up of Class 10 C. “This class is really horrible”, says our present Class Teacher, Mrs. Mita Das. The teachers will be really happy when Thursday ‘ s classes are over. They’ll finally be able to bid goodbye to Class 10 C. Some students will come back in Class 11, but this batch will never be there.

Yet, we are a bit sad. Yesterday, we had our last feast together. We have been having these feasts since Class 4. They’re awfully fun. At the end of 12 years, I feel I must mention the names of a few people who have made my school life really colorful. Its not that all of them have always done the good things, but by doing the bad things also, they have been a source of entertainment. They are (apart from my parents) Chandralekha Didi( my only home teacher till Class 8), Sritama, Mekhala, Soorma, Sukanya, Arittra, Gourav, Tathagata, Bejoy( for being good friends), Aloy( for making us laugh so much), Shaluk Ma’am, Mita Banerjee Ma’am (Chemistry tuition teacher), Debarati (her mother actually, for cooking tasty dishes for us) and Krishanu( for being such a tough competitor and increasing my desire to occupy the position of the topper of the class).

Sunday, November 25, 2007

The Cloud

“I bring fresh showers for the thirsting flowers,
From the seas and streams,
I bear light shade for the leaves when laid
In their noonday dreams….”

You must have guessed by now who that “I” is. And, your guess is correct. The “I” being referred to is the Cloud. The above two lines have been taken from the poem “The Cloud”, written by Percy Bysshe Shelly. It is like an autobiography of a cloud.

The poem starts off by talking about what the Cloud does for the flowers and leaves and sweet buds of the earth. In the second stanza, the Cloud talks about one of its experiences. The Cloud says that it was trapped on top of a tower like the princess of a fairy tale. Then, the lightning came to rescue it just like a prince. The Cloud then escaped with the prince. The Cloud went with the lightning in search of the lightning’s love. The poet has imagined a genii as the lightning’s love. The lightning doesn’t know where the genii is. But, it goes in search of its love “over the rills and the crags, and the hills, over the lakes and the plains…” So, Shelly has made a very beautiful comparison with a fairy tale here.

In the third stanza, we look at the sunrise and sunset through the eyes of the Cloud. “The sanguine Sunrise” is compared to a bird. The golden rays of the sun are like the outspread wings of a bird. The Cloud acts like a ship during sunrise and as the ship floats in the sky, the sun leaps onto its deck. During sunset, as the sky turns crimson, the Cloud rests peacefully in the sky. At this moment, the Cloud is like a dove resting peacefully in its nest.

We also see the beauty of the moon through the Cloud’s eyes. The moon has been picturized as a maiden who makes a rent in the roof of the Cloud. As this rent widens, the reflection of the stars fall on the rivers, lakes and seas . It seems as though these reflections are like “strips of sky” and the water bodies are paved with them.

In the next stanza, Shelly makes another extraordinary comparison. He says that the storm is like a war. In this war, the Cloud is the king and the rivals are hurricane, fire and snow. But, at the end of the storm or the war, the Cloud is victorious. Just as the captives are chained to the throne of the king after a war, hurricane, fire and snow are chained to the Cloud’s throne here. The victorious king also marches through an arch. Here, the “million-coloured bow” acts as the arch for the Cloud.

But, I think that the best part of the poem is the last stanza. The Cloud says that after a shower, the sky is absolutely clear. It is not present in the sky anymore. Therefore, for the mortals, it is dead. The sunbeams build up a blue dome in the sky. This blue dome marks the end of the Cloud and serves as its cenotaph. But, the Cloud has a different opinion.
“I silently laugh at my own cenotaph,
And out of the caverns of rain,
Like a child from the womb,like a ghost from the tomb,
I arise, and unbuild it again.”
This is what it says. Obviously, the Cloud can never die. It can change its form and be in the liquid or in the condensed state, but it can never die. It will move on with its existence and that, I think, is the most touching part of this beautiful poem.

Friday, November 09, 2007

The power of candlelight

“Mere jane ke baad awaaz uthana….” (“Please raise voices of protest after I leave…”).

The above line has become very important for the media now a days. It is actually an SMS, which had been sent by a very simple young man by the name of Rizwanur Rahman to a friend, hours before his death. Rizwanur, 30, expired on the morning of 21st September, 2007. But, his death was not normal. There were (and still are) deep mysteries behind his death. Those mysteries are like entangled ropes and the police have still not been able to clear up the mess. As the unending story about the Rahmans, the Todis, the Police Commissioner, Prasun Mukherjee and other officers like Gyanwant Singh, Ajoy Kumar, etc., etc., continues to haunt the police, Rizwanur’s SMS continues to move the people. Yes, the people. The common man.

Rizwanur Rahman, a common man, married his student, Priyanka Todi, a rich man’s daughter. So, Priyanka Todi left the comfort of her rich parents’ house and went to live with her husband in his small tiled house. And the result? Priyanaka’s father, Ashok Todi, started threatening a married couple with police help. Finally, he brought his daughter back to his own house and made sure that Rizwanur was swept out of the way.

In a very rare example of a criminal case, it’s not the CPI (M) or the Trinamool or some other party, which is raising the voice of protest. And, even if they have tried to protest, they have not exactly been successful. They have only called a bandh or two. But, those bandhs have adversely affected the daily life of the people. But, lighting candles in front of St. Xavier’s College or sitting in front of the College for hours, in protest, or signing Rizwanur’s photo with different comments, has not affected the people adversely even for a fraction of a second. It has been a silent vigil all through. All those people have not solved the numerous mysteries behind Rizwanur’s death. They have only prayed for justice. They have only tried to remember Rizwanur’s last words and fulfill his last desire . They have only tried to raise voices of protest. And, it is this act of the people, which has been successful and has been a source of solace for the Rahman family. The way the people have responded to Rizwan’s SMS, has given them the courage to continue their fight for justice.

Nobody knows how Rizwanur died. Nobody knows whether he was murdered or whether he murdered himself. The incredible amount of corruption in our administration will probably never allow these questions to be answered. Legally, perhaps, this will remain one of the many unsolved cases. But, the Rahmans will always feel happy realizing that they have got the support of the entire country. Rizwan’s request hasn’t been ignored. And, hopefully, Rizwan’s soul will rest in peace, thanks to the innumerable prayers. This incident will remain in the pages of history because of the response it elicited from the people in a democratic nation. It doesn’t really matter whether the CBI solves the case or the CID. They are all the same. We’ll only keep on reading new twists in the story everyday in the newspaper (and forget them very soon). But, the real action, the real protest, will rule our hearts and minds in the days to come.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

Fun at school

Two very funny incidents took place at school today.

Ayan, my classmate went to the school canteen and bought a chicken roll during the recess. He sat down alone on a bench and thought that he would enjoy the roll all by himself.But, he should have known that there was something totally different in store for him. A few others(Arka, Shubhronil and Souradeep) started teasing him and demanded that the roll be shared. Arka even tore off a portion of the roll without Ayan’s permission and ate it. All this while, everybody was having a laugh except for poor Ayan. At one stage, he became so angry that he threw the half-eaten roll out of the window. Seeing that, the others were simply delighted and they started irritating him even more. His Maths book was on the desk. They swung the book in front of his nose and told him to throw it away too. But, they didn’t know that he would take them so seriously. And, he actually threw the book out of the window! Then, he turned totally red in anger and tore up another copy! But, the smiles had not quite faded from the others faces. His behaviour was really funny (at least, that’s what we thought).But, Ayan was really lucky as his Maths book fell on the playground and was recovered.

After the Ayan Episode, came the Tube light Episode (also during recess). Some of the boys were playing with a paper ball. Suddenly, one of them failed to catch it properly and threw it backwards with the tips of his fingers. It went and hit one of the tube lights. And smash! What a noise that was! The tube light came smashing down onto the floor. It was broken into 2 halves and one of the broken halves was broken into a thousand tiny pieces. It was not just the tubelight though. The board on which it remains fixed broke too. Luckily, it didn’t fall on anyone’s head. They all escaped well on time. And, that is why we could laugh. How could a paper ball have broken a glass tube?

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Going to Barrackpore:The two sides of it

Recently, I had the very pleasant experience of traveling by a local train. We were going to my aunt’s house(father’s sister) in Barrack pore, a suburb near Kolkata. As the train entered the platform, all I could see was compartments full of people. No sooner had it stopped than there was a mad rush to occupy a compartment. I didn’t have to enter the compartment myself, I was simply pushed inside along with the crowd. But, miraculously, we got seats. I occupied the edge of one of the long seats. After crossing every station, it seemed to me as though the number of people were increasing. They just seemed to be preferring our compartment and everyone was just pushing my left hand and shoulder as they went by. So, I was really thankful when Barrackpore arrived. But, that was not the end. The return journey was still left and it was worse. This time, we didn’t even get to sit. My mother stood holding on to one seat handle and I stood putting my arms around her shoulders. And, when we reached Bidhannagar station once more, it seemed to me as though the entire population of West Bengal had landed up on the platform.

The daily passengers gradually get used to the hectic journeys by local trains. But, we are not daily passengers. My mother used to travel by local trains some twelve years back. My father has never traveled regularly . And, you can easily rule me out. Forget local trains, I have never had to travel regularly by crowded buses. I go to school and come back when the buses are least crowded. I think I am exaggerating a bit here. You might always ask me how I’ll manage to travel by a local train in future if it becomes compulsory. Well, I’ll have to manage when the time comes. But, the fact is that we are not used to it at present. We visit our aunt’s place hardly once a year.

But, going to Barrackpore also has a good side. The goodness obviously lies in the great food(specially fried rice) cooked by my aunt and her charming smile. That’s why going to Barrackpore also means fun. I must say that my aunt’s hospitality makes up for the dismal train journeys. While serving us during lunch(or dinner), she becomes very nervous trying to ensure that we feel most comfortable. But, the fun would have been much more had my aunt chosen to build her house in a place where we would not have to go by local trains.

Sunday, September 16, 2007


I have been tagged by Deepti Di(Chitrangada)! This is my first tag . So, I am pretty excited.

If I were a beginning, I would be: The first chapter of ‘ Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone’
If I were a month, I would be: October( Durga Puja month )
If I were a day of the week, I would be: Saturday ( day when I can spend maximum time with my parents)
If I were a time of day, I would be: Any such time when I could read Harry Potter
If I were a planet, I would be: EarthIf I were a season, I would be: Monsoon
If I were a sea animal, I would be: Dolphin
If I were a direction, I would be: EastIf I were a piece of furniture, I would be:- Book Shelf
If I were a sin, I would be: Murder
If I were a liquid, I would be: Rainwater
If I were a fraud/scare, I would be: Someone else
If I were a gem, I would be: Diamond
If I were a tree, I would be: Banyan
If I were a tool, I would be: Spade
If I were a flower/plant, I would be: Lotus
If I were a kind of weather, I would be: Any weather minus humidity
If I were a musical instrument, I would be: Piano
If I were an animal, I would be: Dog
If I were an emotion, I would be: Happy
If I were a vegetable, I would be: Cauliflower
If I were a sound, I would be: Sound of trinkets
If I were an element, I would be: Gold
If I were a car, I would be: Scorpio
If I were a song, I would be: Kaisi Paheli Zindagani (from Parineeta)
If I were a food, I would be: Chilly Chicken
If I were a place, I would be: Kolkata
If I were a material, I would be: Silk
If I were a taste, I would be: Salty
If I were a scent, I would be: Scent of good food
If I were a religion, I would be: Harry Potterism
If I were a sentence, I would be: The teaching of Maths is the worst thing to have happened in human history
If I were a body part, I would be: Eyes
If I were a facial expression, I would be: Affection
If I were a subject in college, I would be: English
If I were a shape, I would be: Triangle
If I were a quantity, I would be: Centimetre
If I were a color, I would be: Green
If I were a thing, I would be: A copy of ‘Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban’
If I were a landmass, I would be: Antarctica
If I were a book, I would be: Any book of Harry Potter
If I were a monument, I would be: Golden Fort, Jaisalmer
If I were an artist, I would be: Pablo Picasso
If I were a collection of poems, I would be: Any collection of poems by Rabindranath Tagore
If I were a landscape, I would be: Sea beach
If I were a watch, I would be: Titan
If I were God, I would be: Infinitely powerful
If I were a vowel, I would be: I
If I were a consonant, I would be: S
If I were a formula, I would be: Sridhara Acharya’s formula of solving quadratic equations(The easiest one I have come across)
If I were a Science, I would be: Botany
If I were a theory, I would be: As simple as possible
If I were a famous person, I would be: J.K.Rowling
If I were electronic equipment, I would be: Television
If I were sport, I would be: Cricket
If I were a movie, I would be: Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets
If I were a cartoon, I would be: Scooby Doo
If I were an explorer, I would be: Christopher Columbus
If I were a scientist, I would be: Galileo Galilei
If I were a relation, I would be: Faithful Daughter
If I were a river, I would be: Ganga
If I were intoxication, I would be: Love for my parents
If I were alone, I would be: Lost
If I were a question, then I would be: Where are you?
If I were a hobby, I would be: Blogging
If I were a habit, I would be: Anything other than saying “Stupid” and “Shut Up” almost always
If I were in an atom, I would be: Neutron
If I were an end, I would be: The last part of ‘A study in scarlet’ by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
If I were you, I would be: A much better friend

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Horlicks Fun Facts

These are certain fun facts(sponsored by Horlicks) which were published in TTIS(The Telegraph In Schools) in the two most recent edition. Would like to share them here.

Did you know: That his lookalike nephews are called Peepeye,Pupeye, Pipeye and Popeye.

David Beckham:
Did you know: That he appears in the film Goal 2:Live the Dream, when the film’s lead character gets transferred to Real Madrid. That in the film Bend it like Beckham, the director used look-alikes of him.

Sachin Tendulkar:
Did you know: John Wright, who later became the coach of India, took the catch that prevented Sachin from becoming the youngest centurion in Test Cricket.

Did you know: That the first Tintin book, Tintin in the Land Of The Soviets appeared on January 10, 1929 and ran till May 30,1980. That Snowy’s original French name is Milou and he is a white wire fox terrier.

Roger Federer:
Did you know:
That Roger contemplated taking up football professionally before taking up tennis as a career. That he is the first living Swiss to be featured on a stamp in Switzerland.

Baichung Bhutia:
Did you know:
That Baichung actually means younger brother and that there is a stadium in Namchi which is named after him.

Hrithik Roshan:
Did you know:
That his debut was actually in the movie Aasha as an extra in a dance sequence at the age of six!

Friday, August 24, 2007

The return of the Great Dane

“And, I would have got away with it, if it hadn’t been for you meddling kids!”

This is one very famous dialogue from my most favorite cartoon of all times. The Great Dane with his sweet face, his amazing teenaged friends and all those ghosts, ghouls, sea monsters, etc. etc. …. Yes, I am talking about none other than SCOOBY DOO!

When I was about five years old, we got our new T.V. with a new cable connection. One evening, as my father sat browsing through the channels, he came across Cartoon Network. The cartoon that was being aired at that moment was Scooby Doo. I remember being absolutely thrilled by whatever I saw that day. I liked the cartoon so much that I made up my mind to watch it everyday. I did watch it too. I remember that in those days, it used to be aired at 8 p.m. My love for the dog seemed to increase with every episode. At present, Harry Potter is my passion, my obsession. There was a time when Scooby Doo used to be in Harry Potter’s place. Most people around me liked Tom and Jerry and Dexter’s Laboratory. They were really surprised to note that I liked Scooby Doo. They made fun of my choice and me. But, I hardly cared.

In the year 2000, Cartoon Network held an election. They wanted to know which cartoon their viewers fancied the most. The viewers would have to vote for their favorite cartoon saying why they liked it. The cartoon with maximum votes would become the ‘Toon of the Millennium.’ I didn’t waste any time. Immediately sent my vote for Scooby Doo by post. And, Scooby Doo won! He became the ‘Toon of the Millennium’.

But, around 2003, pressure from studies began to increase. So, it became very difficult to sit and watch T.V. at 8 p.m. Gradually , my eagerness to watch the episodes began to flicker. Then, it stopped altogether. With the intervention of Harry Potter in 2004, Scooby was totally wiped out from my mind.

Recently, I discovered an entire new series of Scooby Doo called ‘What’s New Scooby Doo?’ being aired on Cartoon Network. The timing , 2 p.m., is just perfect. I started watching it on Thursdays and Fridays (days I don’t have tuition after school). I liked it a lot. These new episodes are fantastic. Scooby Doo is back in my life. So are Fred, Daphne, Velma and Shaggy. And, of course, all those ghosts who are not really ghosts. They are just a bunch of people trying to scare everyone off because of some reason or the other. The dialogue that I quoted at the beginning of this post is the dialogue that they give after Scooby and Co. catches them.

My love for Harry Potter might eclipse my love for Scooby Doo, but I still love Scooby and will always do. After all, he was my first passion.

Wednesday, July 25, 2007


After days of anxiety and eagerness, I finally read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows on 21st July. Reading the final installment of Harry Potter, turned out to be one of the most pleasant experiences of my life. On other days, my mother keeps on calling me in the morning to wake me up, but my body simply doesn’t want to move (that too at 7 o’ clock in the morning). But, on 21st July, my mother had to call me just once (at 7.30) and I got up immediately. The bookstore (Star mark) had been decorated specially for the occasion with posters of Harry Potter and his friends. Black balloons were hanging all over the store and the people selling the book had dressed up as witches and wizards. Plus, the background music, which is played in all Harry Potter movies, was being played inside the store too.

We came back home almost at noon (coz the bookstore is quite far from our house) and I started reading immediately. Then, I read on and on and on. I didn’t even get up for eating. So, my mother fed me both my lunch and dinner. I became a witch too. I went with Harry, Ron and Hermione to wherever they went. I really liked the parts where the trio wandered from one place to the other, trying to find out about the next horcux. But, this was the first time that I was fed up with those long descriptions given by Rowling. Well, the descriptions were not exactly long. They were of the usual size. Their quality was excellent too. But, I was desperate to finish off the book in one day. So, there were times when those descriptions seemed really long. Yet, I enjoyed myself thoroughly and was successful in finishing it off in one day.

HP7 is really good. It’s better than the fifth and sixth installments, but not as good as the first four ones either. In fact, I still think that the third part is the best. I don’t know whether all of you have already read the book or not. So, I won’t spoil the fun for you by writing everything about the story. But, everybody knows that Harry is alive. And that is the best part of the book. At least, Harry killed Voldemort and destroyed all the horcuxes. At least, both Ron and Hermione are alive too. Some people are dead though. The saddest death is that of Fred Weasley, Ron’s elder brother. There was a small portion in the book when Harry was confused about whether Voldemort wanted horcuxes or hallows. Hermione kept on telling him that hallows did not exist and Ron was confused about whom to support. So, for days, they seemed to be getting nowhere in their journey of vanquishing Voldemort.

But, by talking about Harry’s children, Rowling has left a lot of scope to write more about Harry Potter in future. Maybe, someday, we will read another book based on magic, named “Albus Severus Potter and the Return of Dark Magic”. We may even get to read another seven-book series. All in all, HP7 is very good. This was the first time that I bought and read a Potter book on the day of its release. So, before its release, there was a lot of excitement. While I was reading it, my own hands and feet were becoming really cold. My heartbeat rate was increasing. For the first time, I felt that Harry Potter is not just a story for me. Harry Potter and his friends are my friends too. They have made my world more beautiful.

Exactly a week before reading the book, I watched Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix”. The movie was very good too. I think that out of five movies, this is the third best movie, the first and second movies being better than this one. HP5, the book, was not as good as the other parts. But, the director, David Yates, has managed to pick out the good parts of the story from its numerous sub-plots. All the actors were very good too. Daniel Radcliffe is just getting better with every film. The only person whom I didn’t like is Michael Gambon, who plays Albus Dumbledore. He did not do well at all. Moreover, in the movie, spectacles for Dumbledore were not used. So, that aspect was a total letdown. How could they imagine Dumbledore without his spectacles?

This was my last post before my pre-selection exam, which starts on 6th August. It will end on 22nd August. So, I will see my blogger friends again on the 22nd. Till

Sunday, July 15, 2007

About a Friend

As my blog celebrates its first birthday today, I would like to write something about a very special person in my life. It was that person who introduced me to the blogging world exactly a year ago. That person is none other than my cousin, whom you all know as Woodsmoke. She is the sister in everyone’s dream.

But for me, she is not Woodsmoke. She is ‘Tanni Didi’. And, ‘Tanni Didi’ is what I have been calling her from the very moment I have known her. I met Tanni Didi for the first time at a Kolkata restaurant in around 1995. I must say that I was not at all pleased to see her because she had hugged my mother. That had made me feel very jealous. “How dare she hug my mother”, is what I had thought.

But, gradually, I realized that she was not such a bad person after all. I slowly began to like her. I don’t remember a detailed account of those days now. But, I know that I used to irritate her. At our grandparents’ house in Kolkata, I used to force her to play with me after lunch in the garden. Under that scorching afternoon sun, she would be forced to play the ‘ Find the cat’ game with me. Cats frequented (they still do) our grandparents’ house. So, Tanni Didi’s job would be to find out where the cats were hiding! But, she was such a darling. She would never refuse.

Tanni Didi had even slapped me once…..in a taxi because I had been continuously crying and she had been trying her best to make me stop. But, when I refused to listen to her polite requests, she just lost her temper.

Our relationship became stronger in 2001, when Tanni Didi came to Kolkata. We (along with our other family members) went to Digha and we simply had a blast. Those moments with Tanni Didi were just wonderful. In that period, she taught me loads of things—new English words, new games, and drew my attention towards the Enid Blyton books. We also discovered that both of us were huge fans of Shahrukh Khan. Later on, that is presently, we both are huge Harry Potter fans.Anyway,when she went back to Delhi, she started writing letters and emails to me. She taught me that when we get a letter from someone, we should reply to it. And, each of those letters had something special about it. She would make fun of my friend Debarati, calling her Debarati Subramanium. In one letter, she had actually drawn pictures of Debarati and her family members in a way that suggested they were South-Indians.She would say that Debarati was actually a “Jhinge-seller”(Jhinge is the Bengali word for a certain vegetable). Needless to say, our communication through email was equally exciting as well. She had once sent me an e-card showing the picture of a huge bear hugging a small one. In the same year, we all visited Rajasthan. In Rajasthan, I don’t remember having spent a single moment without her, except during nighttimes.

A time came when I began to be inspired by Tanni Didi’s success. She began to get such good jobs. Well, she was always so determined to do something really good. Although she says that I will make our family proud too, I feel I lack certain things like determination. I am determined, but not as determined as her. It’s difficult to be like her. She is presently in Idaho in the US and she is managing everything so well. It is obviously very difficult to live in a different country with different type of people, so far away from home. But, Tanni Didi is so brave. She is studying and earning money at the same time. And, she is not doing something ordinary. She is teaching the Americans!

But, till date, the most wonderful thing that she has taught me is blogging. It was she who suggested that I should open my own blog. It was because of her enthusiasm that I opened this blog and made so many friends. For the first six months, I would not receive any comments on my blog, except for Tanni Didi’s comments. So, again it was she who requested everyone to read my blog. Now a days, my family members praise me so much for writing these posts on my blog. My fellow bloggers praise me so much. I have found such good friends in them. But, would all this ever have been possible without Tanni Didi? No, obviously not. Who else would have taught me all this? I don’t share that sort of a rapport with my other cousins.

So, on the joint occasion of Tanni Didi’s birthday (19th July) and my blog’s birthday (15th July), I would like to thank Tanni Didi with all my heart. I want to thank her for being such a wonderful friend. I want to thank her for making my life more colorful. I also want to tell her “Please come to India as soon as possible. I am waiting to eat beef prepared by you.”

Thursday, July 05, 2007

Rain Rain Rain

Not long ago, our city had been craving for a drop of rainfall.

A month later, the scenario has changed completely. The city doesn’t want the rain anymore. They are more than satisfied. In fact, now they are worried.

Kolkata has received almost 300mm of rainfall in the past three days. So, the entire city is waterlogged now. In some areas like Amherst Street and Shukiya Street, a boat service has been started to help the people cross the road. Water has entered the ground floors of all houses.
On Tuesday morning, I woke up to find a very dark environment. It was raining heavily. But, we had to submit a project on Tuesday. So, I got ready for school. My father went to call a taxi. In the meantime, I rang up my friends and came to know that they wouldn’t be going to school that day. Then, my father came back, completely drenched, and informed that there was nothing on the street. So, I gave up the idea of going to school and sat down to study at home instead. But, my parents still started for their respective offices after the rain slowed down a bit. Later in the day, I came to know that the usual Physics tuition class would not be held either. As the day dragged on, the rain showed ominous signs. It continued on and on and on .A canal flows just by our apartment. So, our area became waterlogged too. By evening, water had entered the ground floor of our apartment (Thankfully, we live on the first floor).

Yesterday morning, it was not raining. So, I got ready for school again. Then, like any normal day, I started for school with my father. But, our school had not opened! Some students were standing in front of the closed school gate. Oh well, that was still okay. We were coming back home quite happily. But, when we reached the Airport Gate bus stop, we got a nasty shock. All vehicles had been stopped and hundreds of office-goers and students were standing helplessly. The President of Vietnam would be passing the road. So, the great Kolkata Police force had stopped the daily life of the people. On a normal day, people die because of accidents on that same road. Then, these people are not to be seen. It seems as if they arrive just to help the people to fall in trouble. So, after standing for a full 50 minutes, the vehicles were released. After dropping me home, my father started for office. Yesterday, the condition was worse. So, he reached office after a record two-and-a-half hour

So, today morning, I did not get ready for school at all. I knew the school would be closed today too. And, that’s exactly what has happened. So, with no school and no tuition classes for three full days, I have been able to study to my heart’s content. In the tenth standard, it becomes difficult to attend school everyday, especially when the exam is just a month away. So, without having to worry about the attendance at school or about studying for the exam, I got this very important time for studying. So, the rain has come as a blessing for me, at least. In fact, I’ll be happy if the school remains closed tomorrow too.
But, most Kolkatans want the rain to end. So, let’s hope that the torrential rain stops and we receive occasional spells of rainfall.

Thursday, June 21, 2007


“I ask’d thee, ‘Give me immortality.’
Then didst thou grant mine asking me with a smile,
Like wealthy men who care not how they give….”

The above is an extract from my most favourite poem till date.

‘Tithonus’, written by Lord Alfred Tennyson, is a dramatic monologue, which talks about the handsome Tithonus and the Goddess of dawn, Aurora. When Lord Alfred Tennyson’s friend died at a very tender age, he almost went mad with sorrow. But, afterwards, he realized that death is important. At a certain age, death is a boon. Under this inspiration, he wrote this beautiful poem.
Tithonus had fallen in love with Goddess Aurora. Goddess Aurora loved him too. But, Tithonus made a big mistake when he asked for immortality from the Goddess. For her, it was just another favour to be granted. So, she happily presented Tithonus with the bane called immortality. Tithonus’ joy knew no bounds. This joy, blended with pride, gets reflected in the second stanza of the poem, where he says,
“So glorious in his beauty and thy choice,
Who madest him thy chosen, that he seem’d
To his great heart none other than a God!”
But, poor Tithonus! Goddess Aurora had granted him immortality, but not immortal youth. Of course, gods and goddesses never age. Although Ma Durga comes to Kolkata every year, we never find her hair graying. Similarly, Aurora was forever young. On the other hand, Tithonus was growing old every day. He was tired. All he wanted now was death. He only wanted to die like a normal human being. So, in the last stanza, he says, “Of happy men that have the power to die.” But then, he also assures Aurora that she would be able to see him even after he became mortal again. At least, she would be able to see his grave every day, when she would rise in the East.

So, we see that Tithonus loved Aurora. But, afterwards, he realized that he loved the life of a normal human being more. The poet does not tell us the ultimate destiny of Tithonus. Whether he became mortal again or not, is still a mystery. But, with such a rich concept and such a wonderful execution of the same concept, Lord Alfred Tennyson weaves magic. The central theme of the poem is the natural cycle of birth and death that goes on in this world. Many poets must have dealt with this. But, this topic becomes interesting when Lord Alfred Tennyson blends it with the topic of love. So, in this aspect, ‘Tithonus’ stands out. Hats off to Lord Alfred Tennyson for this!

Thursday, June 14, 2007

"Barso re Megha"


That was the sound by which I was awaken yesterday morning. And, what a pleasant surprise it turned out to be!! It was raining! The sound was that of thunder. So, along with millions of other Kolkatans, I was convinced that the Monsoon had arrived. FINALLY!!!

We had actually received the first rains of the season on 8th June. But, that had not been enough to keep away the heat. And, the heat this time was aweful. Simply aweful. Very hot, with the sun dropping fireballs and very very very humid. So, naturaaly, the one-hour rainfall on the morning of 8th June had been highly dissatisfying.

But, yesterday’s rain (106 mm), accompanied by thunder and lightning(thunder and lightning like I have never heard or seen before) has made it very clear that the monsoons have arrived in Kolkata. I must say that the timing is perfect because my school reopens this Monday and I won’t have to face the heat, at least. But, it was sad that seven people died in one morning.
Nevertheless, everyone is relieved.

Sunday, June 03, 2007

Cheeni Kum....and Himesh Reshamiya

Yesterday, I saw “ Cheeni Kum” with my parents.Starring Amitabh Bachchan, Tabu , Paresh Rawal, Zohra Sehgal and a child artiste, “Cheeni Kum” is a romantic comedy. It teels the story of Buddhadev Gupta( Amitabh Bachchan), a 64-year old chef, who falls in love with Neena Verma(Tabu), a 34-year old citizen from Delhi.

The first half of the movie is good, but the second half is bad. In the second half, the film becomes very boring. There are good performances from all the actors and actresses. I specially liked Zohra Sehgal. She is so amazing even at 94. As a whole, I didn’t like the movie much. But, it’s worth watching.

I wonder how many of you watch the talent hunt competitions on TV. There are so many now-a-days. I watch “Sa Re Ga Ma Pa—Challenge 2007” and the Bengali version of “Sa Re Ga Ma Pa”. I enjoy these two programmes a lot because these are the only shows which I catch on TV now-a-days. The only con is Himesh Reshamiya. He is one of the Gurus of SRGMP---Challenge 2007(all-India version). And, he loves to quarrel with the other judges and Gurus over every third contestant. He makes the whole atmosphere so irritating. It doesn’t seem as if he has some to the show to encourage youngsters. His only objective is quarreling. When one contestant’s performance was not liked, he said, “Tujhe India mein kaam milega.Main tujhe kaam dunga.” Now, is there anything related to “kaam” here? It is a singing competition. Everything is not over for the contestants if they lose here. And, just imagine the luck of that person who’ll be working under Himesh.

Saturday, May 19, 2007

A lesson learnt

I f you ever get an opportunity to attend a program on an Environmental Awareness issue, try your best NOT TO UTILIZE THE OPPORTUNITY. Instead, sit at home and enjoy the programmes on TV…. Or just sleep…..Give any excuse for not going…..

Why am I saying all this?? Because last week, we were informed by one of our school teachers that there would be a program to celebrate World Environment Day 2007 (which is on 5th June) in advance. The students who had got the highest marks in Environmental Education from each class would be given an award. We would be taken to Khardah Rabindra Bhavan (abt 20 kms from Kolkata) and would return to our school by 4 o’ clock in the evening. The date was 19th May, 2007, Saturday ( today). So, this morning, my mother dropped me to school. But, only 14 students went to Khardah. I was a bit surprised. Why didn’t the other students want to go and receive their award? But, they did just the right thing by not going. When the awards were being given, we learnt that we would not be getting individual awards. Our school would be getting an award for “Outstanding Achievement to Environment and Nature”. And, the teacher who had informed us abt this program, would be getting an award herself.

So, what did we do there? We listened to the speeches of 6-7 guests ( each speech lasting for a minimum of 20 minutes). Obviously, they talked about the ways to save our environment, not to use plastic, not to fix signboards on trees, …….. They even showed their MS-PowerPoint presentations. But, all that didn’t interest us. They were so BORING!! So boring, that one of our students said that he would try not to get the highest marks in Environmental Education again!

We learnt a very good lesson today. I would request you all to listen to this little advice of mine. Please don’t attend these type of functions in future, whether you are supposed to receive an award or not. You’ll obviously get your award somehow. The organizers will send it to you. If you are interested in saving Mother Earth, do all you can. But, don’t attend these programs, NEVER…..

Thursday, May 10, 2007

"The most disappointing day of my life"

Three days back, we had been asked to write an essay at our English tuition class. The topic was “ The most disappointing day of my life.” Initially, the essay may seem really easy to write. But, once you write down the title, and make a move to write down the first word, the most difficult part of the essay pinches you hard. Which was the most disappointing day of your life?? Again, you may think that there have been many disappointing days in your life. So, that’s not a very difficult question. But, it is. It becomes really difficult to choose one day as the most disappointing one of your life.

The result was that 15 students started pondering hard, trying to figure out the day when they had been really hurt. When our teacher asked us the reason for which we were sitting , one boy named Ankit said that there is no disappointing day in his life!! Our teacher said, “ No disappointing day! Such a lucky guy, are you?” This was told very lightly, but what she said next confused us even more. After five minutes or so, we would have to read out the part of our essay which we had written. So, everyone at least started writing something( No matter what it was). Finally, I decided to merge a few incidents together to make up the most disappointing day of my life. I merged very minor incidents together . But, the focus was on one significant incident. My father had applied for a transfer to Kolkata after being posted at Guntur for two years. But, his plea had been rejected. So, he had to live in Guntur for another year.

Now, let me ask you the same question: Which was the most disappointing day of your life? Do let me know this. Also let me know whether you founf this question difficult or not.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

The Virginia massacre

“You had a hundred billion chances and ways to have avoided today. But you decided to spill my blood. You forced me into a corner and gave me one option. The decision was yours. Now you have blood on your hands that will never wash off…”
“When the time came, I did it. I had to….”

The above lines are excerpts from the video package that Cho Seung-Hui sent to NBC News. Yes, Cho Seung-Hui, the 23-year old South Korean ,who triggered the firing at Virginia Tech last Monday. No one knows why he did this. He has made the whole affair even more enigmatic by killing himself and by expressing his feelings through such words as mentioned above. All of you must have seen his pictures in the newspapers. He looks so cruel. Wonder knows what he wanted to achieve by killing 32 honest people. And, what did he achieve anyway? He killed himself after that. News reports say that Cho was becoming increasingly violent. He had been taking medication for depression. Police are facing difficulties in finding out his motive because he was a loner. His classmates said that on the first day of a literature class last year, students went around and introduced themselves. But, when Cho’s turn came, he did not speak. The professor looked at the sign-in sheet and saw that Cho had written a question mark, where everyone else had written their names. The professor had asked him, “ Is your name ‘Question Mark’?”

Some people might say that he killed these people because they were not friendly with him. He must have been frustrated with his loneliness. Maybe, he took revenge by killing all those who had deserted him. But, my point is: Others didn’t desert him. He himself did that. Why did he not introduce himself in class that day? Why didn’t he write down his name? And, was he so lonely that he actually had to kill so many people? Cho Seung-Hui has not only triggered the deadliest campus shooting in US history, but has also revealed a very mysterious human nature. After some days, people will forget him. But, those who lost their family members will remember him forever. They will remember him as the one who killed their kin. Everyone had disliked him when he was alive. After dying, more number of people will dislike him. But, it won’t matter to him. He has cleverly escaped all these miseries by committing suicide.

Among the 32 dead people, two were Indians. Minal Panchal, the “sensitive” and “promising architect” and Professor G.V. Loganathan. I am feeling sorry for both of them…. especially for Minal. Her family must have pinned a lot of hope on her. They must have been really proud when she went to the US. Probably, they were waiting for that day when Minal would come back from the US after doing something big. But, their dreams never turned into reality because of a madman.

I just hope that the authorities do something to make the US university campuses safer. After all, students world over go there to study. My own cousin (Woodsmoke) studies at one of the universities and after this incident, we are all worried for her. May she be safe.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Back to a Cafe

After 4 years, I'm back to a cafe again.

Yes, 4 years. I know I am surfing the net from a cafe only for today. In a week's time, the net connection problems at home will, hopefully, be over. But, this evening has brought back certain memories .

I first discovered the fascinating world of the Net in 2001. I had then just opened my new email account in rediffmail. We did not have a PC at home. So, I used to go to a cyber cafe (called A to Z Cafe) every Sunday afternoon. My father would accompany me. I used to send emails to Woodsmoke and my uncle( Woodsmoke's father). They were living in Delhi at that time. So, those were really special moments. I used to share all the happenings of my daily life with them.
After sometime, my father opened an email account for himself too. Every Sunday, I would restrict my father's afternoon nap to half-an-hour instead of one. And, I would force him to take me to the cafe. In 2001, we went to Rajasthan with Woodsmoke, my uncle, my aunt and Riju Dada (Woodsmoke's parents and her brother)and in 2002, we went to Woodsmoke's house in Delhi. So, the way we counted the number of days left for us to meet in person ,via email, made me think that they were very close to me. It never seemed that they were many miles away. It also strengthened our relationship a lot.

When we bought a PC in 2003, those trips to the cyber cafe obviously stopped. But, after coming back to a cyber cafe obce again today, I feel that those trips to the cafe had played a very important part in my life. I can never forget those Sunday afternoons.

Sunday, April 01, 2007


The results of my annual exam were declared last Monday. This time, I stood second. I was very happy after getting my report card. But, when I realized that I was 42 marks behind Krishanu( the one who stood first), I felt very bad. I saw that I had got less marks in Physics and Maths( 75 each). Well, It's not that I had expected to get more in Maths. But, the Physics marks came as a shock. I just don't understand why I scored so less. I had expected to get marks in the 80s. My marks in another subject shocked me even more. I have scored 77 in Bengali and the highest in Bengali in our class is 87. So, for my marks in these subjects, I could not get to the top this time. But, that did not hurt me because I have stood second many times before this. It was the difference of marks which made me think that I had not done well. So, after coming back home, I began to cry. My parents had started for their respective offices after dropping me home. They were perfectly happy and satisfied with my performance. But, I was not. After sometime, my mother called me and on hearing her voice, I basically started howling on the phone. Although she tried to assure me that she was happy, I felt that I had not lived up to everyone's expectations. Anyway, as the morning went by, my relatives started calling me. My mother had informed them about my result and my unhappiness on getting it. But, they told me that were really happy with my performance. All of them told me that, in future, whenever I'll be called for a job interview, I won't be asked about my performance in the annual exam of class 9. I will be asked about my ICSE and ISC results. Actually, the ISC result will be more important. So, there was nothing to worry. In fact, I had done well. From the tone of their voices, it seemed to me that they were indeed happy. As I was going to my English tuition that afternoon, I realized that this is not the end. I realized that next year's exam is far more important. I have a big opportunity lying ahead. And, most importantly, my parents were happy. At least, the smile was still there on their faces. I really had been very foolish while crying. Then, I also thought that I have done well in the other subjects. I've got 90 each in Geography and Biology, 80 each in Computer and English Grammar. And, I've got the highest marks in 3 subjects ( 91 in Environmental Education, 85 in English Literature and 95 in History). So, all these finally made me happy. And, from tomorrow, it will be a fresh beginning. I'll studying very hard from tomorrow for my ICSE.
I have also decided something else. I had always wanted to be a doctor. I knew that I would have to take up Science in class 11 for that because I would have to study Biology nicely. But, if I take up Science, I'll also have to study Maths. Physics and Chemistry are ok. But Maths!! It is horrible, horrible and still more horrible. I'll never be able to do well in ISC if I study Maths. I just hate that subject. On the other hand, I like all the Arts subjects likeHistory, Geography and English. So, that's what I'll be taking up in class 11......Arts.
Yesterday, I watched "The Namesake" with my mother. It is a very good film. It is a must-watch for all of you. Kal Penn and Tabu were wonderful, especially Kal Penn. He looks very good as Gogol Ganguly. Irrfan Khan was also very good.
Oh, and did all of u know this? The World Cup match between India and Sri Lanka is going to be held again. This decision has been taken collectively by the ICC. In protest, Bangladesh have resinged from the ICC.This news was published in today's edition of the Bengali daily Anandabazar Patrika. And, guess what!! Sourav Ganguly is going to be the captain for this match. Well, well, well.....Best of Luck to Team India!

Sunday, March 25, 2007

The Big Question

The first half of this year has lots in store for Harry Potter fans.

What will happen on 21st July,2007???

It is a big day for millions of Harry Potter fans across the globe. On 21st July, they will get to know the fate of their fictitous magical hero. Will Harry be killed by his creator, J.K.Rowling? Will she ultimately kill her protagonist after saving his life so dramatically in the previous six books? If you have read Harry Potter, you'll certainly know how breathtaking the last few chapters of each book were. Rowling had arranged the plot so beautifully in the last few chapters. She has done this six times. So, why can't she just do it once more? I do hope that Harry points his wand at Lord Voldemort and chants "Avada Kedavra". Just hope it's not the opposite. If Lord Voldemort kills Harry, we will witness the victory of the villain, the victory of the evil. We will not witness the victory of good over evil. But, then, that is the tradition. In all stories, we always find the good fellows winning. It need not necessarily be like that every time. Yet, it will be better if Rowling follows this tradition. She has millions of admirers. But, I guess her protagonist is a lot more popular than her. If she wants to get the same amount of love and admiration, she must not allow the victory of evil over good. Besides, we all know that when Sherlock Holmes was killed in "The final problem", fans all over the world had not accepted it. Sir Arthur Conan Doyle had to make Holmes resurface in "The adventure of the empty house". Probably Rowling doesn't want anyone else to use the lovable character of Harry Potter to write their stories. She probably doesn't want anyone else to use the concept of Harry Potter stories, which are totally the result of her great imagination.

In any case, we, the Harry Potter fans, do not want Voldemort to live. We want Harry to kill him. I am sure Rowling knows that. And if she knows that, she must fulfill her fans' expectations. She already must or mustn't have fulfilled their expectations because she has already written the whole book. We are all eagerly awaiting the release of "Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows" , when we will have the big answer to the big question: Will Harry live or will he die?

Before 21st July arrives, we will see more Pottermania. On 13th May,2007, "Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix"(the movie) will be released worldwide. Most people say that the fifth part was not so good. But I think it was quite good. Let's see whether the movie is as good as the book or better than it or worse.

Friday, March 16, 2007

Enid Blyton rocks

A few minutes back, I finished reading a story from "The Mystery Series" by Enid Blyton. This is "The Mystery of the Vanished Prince." It is a very exciting one. Well, the stories from "The Mystery Series" are always exciting.
This story deals with the disappearance of a certain prince called Prince Bongawah. As usual, the Five Find-Outers ( Fatty, Larry, Daisy, Pip and Bets) come to Peterswood, their hometown, for their summer holidays. Buster,the dog is also there. Even the "Famous Five" and "Secret Seven" stories feature dogs . In the "Famous Five" series, Timmy, the dog, is actually one of the five. So, all three of Enid Blyton's mystery series feature dogs. That's one speciality of these series. Anyway, let me get back to the story. The police constable, Mr. Goon's nephews Ern, Sid and Perce also come to Peterswood. But, they stay just outside the camp that has been arranged for certain schoolboys. Prince Bongawah is one of them.
The story begins really well. It's very funny, with Fatty and his friends fooling Ern, Sid and Perce by disguising themselves as foreigners. Actually, Fatty doesn't put on a disguise. He tells Ern, Sid and Perce that he has made friends with the foreigners. He introduces Bets to them as the Princess Bongawee, the sister of Prince Bongawah. The rest are introduced as cousins of the Prince. But, this trick becomes the cause of a few misunderstandings.As a result, when Prince Bongawah disappears from the camp, the police are misguided initially. Then, Fatty and his friends own up to their trick and Fatty promises the Chief Inspector that they will try to find the Prince. But,alas! The mystery seems to have neither head nor tail. The Prince seems to have disappeared from the camp without anyone noticing anything or hearing anything. The Five Find-Outers are puzzled. The only clue seems to be a very beautiful blue and gold button. The Five suspect that it may have come off the Prince's pyjamas. The second clue comes when Sid says he had noticed a third boy in the double pram belonging to twins named Marge and Bert. What follows is a peculiar string of incidents and ultimately, the Five manage to rescue the Prince! I won't talk about the incidents in between because if I do so, I will pour out the most interesting and main parts of the plot. It's such an excellent piece of writing. It is really amazing that Enid Blyton has written 51 mysteries ( 15 each of "The Mystery Series" and "Secret Seven" and 21 of "The Famous Five") and each of these 51 mysteries have got different plots. And, they really are different. One will never find two plots of the same type. It's not that I have read all 51 mysteries, but I am absolutely certain that 51 different plots have come from Enid Blyton's head and all of them are equally good.
I also read "Fifth Formers of St. Clares", again by Enid Blyton. This is the sixth and last book of the St.Clares series. I have read all the previous books of the series, except for "Second Former's of St. Clares". The last book is equally good as its predecessors. The O'Sullivan twins (Pat and Isabel), Bobby, Janet, Claudine, Carlotta,Mirabel, Gladys, Alison, Angela, Pam, Doris and Hilary go up to the fifth form. They are joined by a new student, Anne-Marie who thinks she is a poet. Alma Pudden comes down from the sixth form and Felicity, a real genius in music comes up from the Fourth form. Together with some of the first and second formers ( Jane Teal, Violet Hill, Sally and Antoinette) , Mam' Zelle and Miss Willcox, the fifth formers entertain the readers inspite of exam pressure.
Even the St.Clares series is very good. Oh boy, Enid Blyton was really a good author. How did she manage to write such beautiful stories? Anyway, if I don't stop this discussion here, I'll go on admiring Enid Blyton forever.

Saturday, March 10, 2007

Phew! The exam is finally over. It was going on and on and on....specially the last week....subjects like Environmental Education and Value Education( stories from the Bible) were just irritating! I was also fearing that I might have pox anytime. Actually, one of our friends,Anindita, had come to attend a tuiton class even after getting pox. Thanks to her irresponsible act, I could have had pox too and would not be able to sit for the exam then. I was even more worried because in the last week, Amrita(another friend) got the pox. And, she had sat beside Anindita that day! So, it was obvious that Anindita had spread the germs. Anyway, I don't want to think about this anymore. Like every year, this year too my birthday came during my exams. This year, I shared my birthday with Holi(March 3). Holi/Dol Jatra is always celebrated a day in advance in Kolkata. But I had my Maths exam on March 5. So, I celebrated my birthday by studying the worst branch(Geometry) of my least favourite subject. The best parts of the day were the lunch-time and the dinner-time, since the food had been prepared by my mother and maternal grandmother.
This year though, the vacation after the annual exam is not going to be that good. The next session will be a very important one because we'll be in the tenth standard.After all, we'll be preparing for the ICSE exam, the first big exam of our lives. So, my tuition classes will be starting from the week after next. Anyway, the pressure will be less as long as the school doesn't reopen. There'll be enough time to relax and have fun. There will be lots of things to look forward to. The Cricket World Cup begins on Tuesday. It will be interesting to see what the unpredictable Indians do this time. I think South Africa have got a good chance of winning the tournament. England will try hard too. But probably they won't be successful.What do u think? Which team will win the World Cup? Also let me know who your favourite player in the Indian cricket team is and why. My favourite is Rahul Dravid for the beauty of his batsmanship. What I like the most about him is that he always plays for the team. Yesterday, I saw in the newspaper that some politicians have described cricket as a game for rich people who drink beer in the afternoon. I hope you all don't agree with this. It's absolute rubbish. India is a cricket-crazy nation. Every Indian, whether rich or poor is mad about cricket. It is ineed true that the other sports are being neglected because of cricket, but all these politicians are in charge of one sport or the other, as was reported in the newspaper. And, these are sports like shooting, rowing,athletics, football,etc.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

The exam is knocking on the door

What a day was yesterday! Not just today's incidents, the incidents of the last few days have made me extremely tired. I am so much frustrated that I'm even feeling tired to think that I'll have to type this post now. When I say "incidents", I don't mean incidents belonging to different categories. All of them were related to my studies, specially the projects.
My Annual Exam commences next Thursday ( 22nd Feb). And, there's lots to revise. But, we get the time to revise only when we can miss school at least twice a week. However, such possibilities seemed to be very less because the teachers still hadn't taken our project files. On Sunday, what I did throughout the day was stick the pictures in my Environmental Education project file, complete my Maths project and complete making the covers of both project files. To make things worse, an extra evening tuition class was also there.
After submitting three projects on Monday and attending my routine English tuition in the afternoon, I came back home under a lot of mental pressure. I knew I'd have to prepare three big chapters for the test that was to be taken on Tuesday at my Physics tuition. I knew that it didn't matter if I performed badly in the test. But I also knew that preparing the chapters properly would mean preparing them for the Annual Exam. I also wanted to study Chemistry because on Wednesday, I'd have to give a test on the full syllabus! But forget reading Chemistry, I couldn't read Physics properly. I just wasn't able to concentrate! I wasn't able to study! Something had surely gone wrong. And then, I did something which I had never done before. I burst into tears, for not being able to study properly. My parents were alarmed. So, my father read the chapters to me and I just listened.But, it worked wonders because after listening carefully, I could remember almost everything.
Next day, we submitted our Geography projects in the first period at school. All through the rest of the day, many of my friends came up to me to enquire about the Physics project which would have to be submitted on Wednesday. Somehow or the other, no one knew exactly what to do. Anyway, it did not hurt to help them. And, guess what? I got the highest marks in the Physics test in the afternoon! Though the marks itself was not very good, I got more than my friends. The evening that followed ate my and my father's head. I hadn't completed the Physics project myself. But, I had never expected that it would take one whole evening to complete an apparently simple diagram and an equally simple graph. Oh, how wrong I was! The graph just would not produce a straight line passing through the origin. Unable to do it all by myself, I called my father, and we were simply disgusted! After a lot of approximation, we got what we wanted. But it was such a tedious job.
On Wednesday, I helped some of friends complete their Physics projects( specially the graph). Yesterday, there were more free periods and everyone did their Physics projects all through the day. This was one project which was truly eating everyone's head. We felt a bit relieved when our teacher told us that she would check the projects very leniently. By the end of the last period, everyone had submitted their projects. Later in the afternoon, we requested our Chemistry Madam not to take the test. Instead, we solved the questions which she had prepared by copying the answers from the book. We also cleared our doubts as yesterday's class was the last one before the exam. I was very satisfied, but what I heard in the evening again made me frustrated. My paternal grandmother had suffered from a stroke in the morning and was in hospital. My parents had gone there. After hearing the news, I was not very shocked because my grandmother is 83. She is bound to suffer sometimes. But, I felt very bad for my parents. They will again have to work very hard. They'll have to visit my grandmother in the hospital and do most other things concerned with making her better. Although two of my aunts and my good-for-nothing uncle and his wife are there, they won't try to help much. When it comes to work and money, they'll again have to take the help of my parents. My parents are always willing to help, but it makes them unhappy to think that these people remember them only when necessary.
This is probably my last post before the exam. I'll again be blogging on 9th March, when my exam gets over.

Thursday, February 01, 2007


Dear Readers,

Ever since all of you started reading my blog, a question started to come to my mind frequently. I am a lot younger than all of u. Then, while replying to your comments, how do I address you? It looks very rude to address you by your names, because I am younger than you all. Some of your comments come signed along with your surnames( like Rohit Talwar or Richa Bhardwaj). But I also feel it rude to address you by your full names. And naturally, it is more difficult to address you when your comments come signed with your names only (like Subhadip, Kanu, Amiya). I feel very uneasy while addressing you by your names. When your comments do not come signed with your actual names (like Woodsmoke, Chitrangada, Deeps), it is easier to address you, yet I am confused! Whether I should or should not add "Bhaiyya" or "Didi" to your names......... I simply don't know what to do.

So, I request you all to tell me this: How do I address you?
I'll be comfortable with any name that you suggest.

Yours faithfully,
Sinjini Sengupta

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

My mother and Ma Saraswati

It's that time of the year again when a small vacation comes our way, thanks to Netaji's birthday,Republic Day, Saraswati Puja, etc.It usually means a lot of fun. The annual exam starts knocking on the door during this period. Before this mini holiday begins every year, I promise myself that I'll make the most of these few days and study as much as I can. But somehow or the other, I don't quite feel like studying when my parents are at home...... feel like going out with them.....somewhere, anywhere. Again this year , this mini vacation is giving me extra time to study. And yet again,the situation is the same. I didn't quite feel like solving the Geometrical problems which I had planned to solve this afternoon. So,here I am, sitting and typing another post for my blog on the joint occasion of Netaji's birthday and Saraswati Puja.
Day before yesterday, we celebrated my mother's birthday. Unfortunately, she had to attend office, although the day was Sunday. The work that she had was extremely important. So, we thought it best to let her attend office. She said that she would come back early. After a good breakfast, I went to attend my drawing class. I was exactly an hour late. Our drawing Sir had called us an hour early that day and the class had begun at 9 a.m. But, for us, 9 a.m. on Sunday is equivalent to 7 a.m. on a weekday. So, we are always very slow on Sundays. Anyway, I must say that I did a good amount of work even after being an hour late. Sir was not angry either.
Saraswati Puja is celebrated at my drawing school every year. This year, our drawing Aunty ( who is the owner of the school and also, the original teacher) requested a few of us to arrange for the decorations of the room in which the Saraswati idol is kept. I knew that there were very few people who could help Aunty this year. Our seniors have all left owing to pressure in their studies. So, me and another student are the present seniors . After our drawing session was over, we took suggestions from Sir regarding the decorations.Three of us( including me) went to the market with Aunty's assistant to buy the idol and the things needed for decoration. This was a new experience for me. Inspite of being a part of my drawing school for about ten years, I've never helped to arrange this little event. This year, for the first time, I felt that I should help. So, we walked all the way to the market and bought a red marble paper and certain things made of thermocol. Then came the most difficult part.....choosing the idol! There were so many Saraswati idols ......some were big while others were small, some were clad in orange saris, some in green, while others in purple. Price was also a factor, as our budget was not much and the idols were expensive. After surfing for twenty minutes, we found the idol of our choice. Ma Saraswati looked gorgeous in a silver-cloured sari and her face looked as pretty as ever. Soma Didi( Aunty's assistant) did some useful bargaining and bought the idol for Rs.200, for which Rs.320 had been charged initially. Then, mounting Ma Saraswati on a van-rickshaw, and sitting on it ourselves to guard her, we headed back for our drawing school. Once the goddess was safe and sound in the second-floor room, we started decorating the room. In an hour, we did a very neat job. Satisfied with what we had done, I came home with my father at about 2.30 p.m. We had almost finished our lunch, when the Birthday Girl called to say that she was on her way home. Immediately, we finished eating and went out to buy Mammam's birthday cake. She doesn't enjoy cream cakes much, so we bought a fruit cake for her. When we came back, we saw her standing outside our apartment.
In the evening, she cut her birthday cake. Although she protested, we went out to buy her gift and returned with a dazzling set of fashionable earrings and necklace. She was very happy with her gift and then, we went out for dinner. We went to Red Hot Chilly Pepper on Ballygunge Circular Road. As is evident from the name, the food there is very spicy. But, at the same time, the food is very good. The menu was Chicken Clear Soup( with some momo in it), Rice Noodles and Shredded Chicken in Green Chilly Sauce. In this way, we enjoyed ourselves a lot.
Today morning, I went to my drawing school to attend Saraswati Puja. The puja was also held in our house, but in a very simple and short way.

Friday, January 12, 2007


Wednesday, November 29, 2006
Time: 10.20 pm.
" Baba, there is no laminated brown paper to cover my Biology project file."
This was what I told my father the night before submitting my project file. I had thought that there was enough laminated brown paper in the house, but I was wrong. I told my father that we would remove the cover from another project file very carefully and use it for the Biology project file. But he did not agree . Since my marks were related to this project, he immediately put on his clothes and went out at that time of the night to buy the required brown paper. We were lucky. The shop was still open and and he got the brown paper. But he did not complain even once, nor did he scold me. His only concerns were me and my marks. That evening, we had already been to the market once, but I didn't know about the brown paper then. It was my fault. I should have noticed. My father had to take up the pain and go to the market just because of ME.
My father is jsut like this. Incidents, such as the one mentioned above, have happened before too. But everytime, my father came to my rescue. Baba is absolutely a family man. He specially loves to spend time with me. As soon as he comes home from office everyday, I jump and give him a big hug, scratch is beard and pull his moustache. I also mess up his hair. Although he tries to protest, I don't stop. I even start tickling him. He tries to counter- attack, but is not successful every time. He never says it, but I know that he loves all this. I just know that he won't be able to stay calm even if I stop doing this for one evening. in this world will Baba talks to himself sometimes. When he is alone in a room, doing something, you can hear him murmuring to himself. He also murmurs in and even sometimes on the road. If he and Mammam come from opposite directions on the road, he looks at Mammam and then walks past, without recognizing her! So, he is a bit mad, but that, according to me, is also his special quality.
When I was in class two, Baba was transferred to Balugaon in Orissa. I mentioned in one of my previous post that it was very difficult for us back at Kolkata. But it was also difficult for my father. He had to live all alone. At least, Mammam and I were together at Kolkata, but who was there at Balugaon? Still, Baba managed to live there for one-and-a-half years without complaining about anything, even for one day. He would call us every night. I remember waiting anxiously for his phone-call. As soon as the phone would ring at about 9.30, I would run and pick up the receiver and say ' Baba' without saying 'Hello' first. I just knew it was his phone. I have been mistaken very few number of times. Baba stayed with us after his tranfer to Kolkata for three years. Then, he was again transferred, this time to Guntur in AP. This was even more difficult, as he was away for 3 years. This time too, it was just as difficult for him , as it was for us. But, he found a nice rented flat for himself and settled down well. In course of time, he learnt how to cook. He actually learnt how to live alone. I know that it was very difficult, having no one to open the door when he came back from office, to cook good food for him and most importantly, to share his feelings. He used to call us every night , but he did not let us realize for one moment that he was lonely there. This time, our new slogan was "O Baba, heh heh Baba" and we used to say it on the phone every night. We used to say it 5 times on one particular night and then, the number would increase to 10 on the next night, 15 on the night after that and so on, till it reached 50. After that, we would again start from five.
The most difficult part would come when Baba would go back to Guntur after coming home for a week or so. We used to get up very early to escort him to the taxi stand. After that, when I would enter our study, I would find it all neat and clean, very unlike what it is in Baba's presence.
Baba used to come home from Guntur once in two-three months. One such homecoming was in August 2004. But when we heard our calling bell and opened the door, we found Baba standing there with a peculiar expression on his face. We quickly brought him inside the house and discovered that he was very sick and exhausted. But we couldn't make out what had gone wrong. So, we took him to his physician who said that Baba would have to be admitted to a hospital. Baba had suffered a mild cerebral attack.For four days, he was in the hospital. He was recovering, but those four days were hellish.Not just those four days, the month after that when he stayed on at Kolkata to take rest, were hellish. Nothing seemed to be cheerful, beacuse Baba was ill. Both Mammam and I wanted him to get well soon. I had had experiences of someone else in my family falling sick and my father always rising to the situation. But this time he himself was ill. We could help Baba, but his physical pains were only his. We could not share them. Mammam did everything that she could to help Baba and it rent my heart to see them both suffering together. Why did God not punish me then, in some inexplicable way? I could have tolerated the pain, but why did my great Baba suffer? He does not deserve what he got.
I guess the only problem with Baba is that he snores very loudly.And there is a wide range of sounds that he can produce while snoring. If one finds different pages of the newspaper lying in different parts of the drawing room, then it becomes obvious that my father had been reading it.
Last word: " Dear Baba, to describe you very briefly, you are THE BEST. I can live without you for 3 years, but that life is very strange. It's like one part of my body staying at Kolkata and the other part going away with you wherever you go. It's not that Mammam doesn't fulfill my requirements when you are not here, but you yourself, is a big requirement for me. I am so lucky again that you are my father. Life has been very different and colourful because you have made it that way. Thank you and love you always."