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… 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.