Daily Prompt: Game of Groans

pad2015-s1.png (308×60)

Think of an object, an activity, or a cultural phenomenon you really don’t like. Now write a post(tongue in ….cheek or not…your call)about it’s the best thing ever.

Last week I was invited to attend a graduation party hosted by the parents of the graduate in a  church basement in the city. The hostess went all out, she cooked everything she thought would be appreciated by her guests.

There were three different dishes of chicken, there was beef and salmon fish. Rice was also served with it. We call  pulao or pilaf the English version.

The dessert was Gulab Jamun, our Canadian friends love it. We love it too and I have a recipe in my blog.

At first I was hesitant about going to the party, certain people who were  invited  are seasoned gossippers, I don’t care much about it.

The party went well, I was happy I decided to go. Sometimes I need to see people who speak the same language as me, I don’t mind speaking English ,but I do not want to lose touch with my mother tongue, which my father worked so hard to remind us we must know our own language first, then the ones we learned in school,and  in the neighborhood.

Regardless of where fate puts us it’s always a good thing to remember our roots.

And yes I had a good time speaking my mother tongue with a whole bunch of people. I enjoyed being there and realized I need to keep in touch with some of these people.

 

………………………………………. 🙂

365 Writing Prompts: Blogging

When I started blogging I knew nothing about it. I read a post written by Robert another blogger and wondered if I should try as well. I had no idea how to begin I was helped by Akhtar Waseem Dar, he suggested to start translating some of Tagore’s Poems because I am a Bengali and know the language.

It wasn’t easy, as a young child poetry was my best subject, I read all kinds of poetry written by famous poets. I learned English, Bengali and Urdu in school. I learned to read, write and speak in these languages. Since Bengali is my mother tongue, I had more opportunities to read Bengali poems written by famous poets.

I loved Tagore’s poems, he wrote a lot of poems for children, one of them was: Brishti paurhey tapur tupur : meaning Rain is falling drip drop. This was the first one I translated, Akhtar Bhai(Bhai means brother in Bengali and Urdu) I use brother to show respect. He read the translation and encouraged me a lot. He thought I did a good job. I began to feel confident, I continued to translate Tagore’s poems for a while, then I switched to his song lyrics and started translating them as well. All this time Akhtar Bhai continued to encourage me. There were times I felt insecure, I didn’t know if my translation was worth reading. I’d let my daughter read it before posting, she’d read it and say: “Mom I like it.” this encouraged me more.

Now Robert whom I’ve known from my online courses is a great help, he reads everything I write and always writes very valuable and encouraging comment.

Then there is Khurram A.Shafique, a writer I’ve known through online courses, he is also the facilitator of the course. I address him as brother. He has been very helpful like a real brother. I feel fortunate to have these three awesome individuals encouraging me.

I cannot remember how but along the way I met Leslie Moon, she is a very gifted poet , I love reading her poetry, I write my comment most of the time, sometimes I’m not sure what to write.

I had once mentioned about not having enough readers of my post, she encouraged me to read posts written by other bloggers. I do read some of the posts and leave my comment. This is how I met Indira.

I am happy I have written and posted quite a few translations, stories, a few poems.  I love reading and memorizing poems but writing them regularly is not one of my strong points, so I leave it for Leslie to write and me to enjoy 🙂

…………………

k: https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2015/04/05/365-writing-prompts-blogging

 

DP Daily Prompts: Pleased to Meet You

pad2015-s1.png (308×60)

Write a post in which two protagonists of two different books meet for the first time. How do the react to each other? Do they get along?

My protagonists are : Alice from, “Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland”, the second one is Saroo ,from, ” A Long Way From Home.”

This is  their first encounter, they have never heard of each other, I introduced them as Alice from, Alice’s Adventure in Wonderland and Saroo from ,”A long Way from Home.” Here fiction and non-fiction make a go at each other.

Alice is a little girl with blonde hair reaching to her shoulders while Saroo is a little boy with short black hair, under weight and poor. At five Saroo looked after his little sister, while Alice was a beautifully dressed, healthy and curious girl. Saroo’s curiosity was limited to his family members Alice was in an advantageous position, she was fortunate enough to go wherever she pleased.

Let us see how they react when they are introduced:

“Alice meet Saroo,” I said.

“Saroo,” Alice makes a face.:(

“Yes Alice I said, Saroo is from India, so his name is different from yours.”

Sensing that her reaction to the name was not well-received, Alice smiled, went a step closer to shake hands with Saroo, little Saroo who  hadn’t seen a white girl before, moved back a few steps.

I was given the task of introducing them it wasn’t working out, I realized they do not know each other’s language, so I explained to Saroo first in his language which is Hindi, then did the same with Alice in English.

They seemed to understand so I let them introduce each other.

Alice was not shy she laughed and said, “Hi, I am Alice”, she extended her hand and both shook hands.

Saroo hesitantly said in Hindi, “namaste, mera naam Saroo hai, barhi khushi hui aap se mil ker.”( my name is Saroo, I am happy to meet you).

I was glad the introduction went well.

Alice took Saroo to a “Mad Tea Party”, Saroo was shy and unable to understand the conversation between Alice and the Mad Hatter, but although five he was smart enough to show a beaming face.

Alice tried to impress Saroo by talking to the three at the party, poor Saroo could not comprehend why this white girl is talking to these strange animals, he could not express himself because there was a language barrier.

At the end of the day Alice was pleased to meet her new friend, who was so sweet and docile. She promised to meet him again and teach him her language,so they could interact with each other!

https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2015/01/18/dp-daily-promp…se-to-meet-you/

365 Writing Prompts: Non-regional diction

Write about whatever you’d like, but write using regional slang, your dialect or your accent.

This one is tough, since I have not learned to record my voice on this machine i.e my computer. I thought about this prompt all evening unfortunately came up with no solution.

It’s morning I haven’t figured out yet how I’m going to enunciate words without sound. My mind tells me to write a story of how I learned some of the languages I know.

My first language is my mother tongue Bengali, my mother always used dialectal Bengali which everyone thought did not sound like the original language.

My Dad spoke perfect Bengali, the language you read in books, between my Mom and my Dad there were no issues which one we the kids should speak.

We picked the dialect and not the proper Bengali my Dad spoke.

Moving on to my next language it was Urdu, the language our neighbors and my friends spoke, it came to us quite naturally, I do not recall having any difficulty speaking it. This one like other languages must have dialects too, but I wasn’t aware of it. I know the kind that sounds better, it has to be the one written in books.

My third language is English, I learned in school, in my earlier stages I learned it from a British teacher, she had the perfect British accent.

Change of school put me in a place where English was spoken with an Irish accent, we were taught by Irish nuns, so my pronunciation changed, I was always keen to learn to speak like the teacher. The British accent I believe changed to Irish.

To me I didn’t recognize the change because “ha:f was always that, there was no change.”

If the accent remained the same it would be superb but it took a hit when I had to change all the long a– sound to short to conform with the rest of the population in North America, the kids I taught thought I had a strange accent.

I pronounced ‘half’ like ‘man’, from then on kids had nothing to say about how I pronounced the words.

Lately I’m forced to change the spelling, whenever I spell ‘labour’ the Brit way, it is underlined in red, to make it easy I drop the ‘U’ reluctantly.

This is my story of how I learned the languages I know and the changes I had to make to avoid being called “Weird!”

: https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2014/11/13/365-writing-pr…gional-diction/

DP Daily Prompts: Imaginary Friend

pad2014-s.png (308×60)

Many of us had imaginary friends as children. If your imaginary friend grew up alongside you, what would his/her/its/ life be like today? ( didn’t have one ? Write about a non–imaginary friend you haven’t seen since childhood.)

I did not have an imaginary friend, I did have a real friend, her name is ‘Farida Jan’

She spoke Persian language at home, in school she spoke English. Ours was a school where the medium of instruction was English, we were not allowed to speak any other language in our classroom. We did speak Urdu which was the local language. I learned it as a child because we lived in cities where Urdu was spoken.

Farida my non–imaginary friend was very quiet like me, which is why we became friends. She had a fair complexion like the Iranians. She was the only child when I met her. I have no idea if she had any other siblings later.

We were separated when I was twelve, we left the city where we lived after my father passed away. I do not know if she continued her studies, perhaps she did , I know nothing  about her now!

nk: https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2014/10/22/dp-daily-prompts/

365 writing Prompt: Ready for your close-up

Cast the movie of your life.

My original homeland is Bangladesh.My father was born in a village. It’s name is “ABURKANDI”,it is a small village in Bangladesh.

My father always believed  one should know,his/ her mother tongue before any other language. We were encouraged to speak our mother tongue when we were in the house.My mother tongue is,”BENGALI”. It is spoken in Bangladesh and the Indian states of west Bengal.

I learned Urdu from  neighborhood kids and later learned to read, write and speak it. I learned English in school where the medium of instruction was English.

Later on I learned some French in the university, it happened when I saw a lady in our university. Naturally curious I asked some of my friends who she was, I was told she taught French. I got interested and asked the lady if I could join her class,at first she refused because she had started the course two months ago and didn’t think I could catch up. She gave in when I promised I’d work hard.  I did well according to the teacher.

When I came to Canada, little bit of french I learned in Bangladesh came in handy, I studied the books my husband had. Canada is a bilingual country, we are expected to know both English and French to get a job. I took a few courses to enable me to teach French to the kids in my class, it was only basic French, nothing complicated.

I don’t recall how or why I took an interest in Spanish, I took some correspondence courses in Spanish. I found Spanish easier than French.

I believe if we fail to practice speaking the languages we learn we lose it.

At the moment  I spend my time participating in online courses and blogging. I enjoy both.

: https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2014/08/28/365-writing-pr…-your-close-up/

 

 

 

 

365 days Writing Prompt: Island of misfit posts

We all have something we’d like to write about ,but that doesn’t really “Fit” our blog. Write it anyway.

I am not sure exactly what I am supposed to write for this prompt. I do not make friends easily, it takes me a while to warm up to anyone, I’m much better now, but as a young child I had a problem making friends because I had a lot of siblings I could play with, but when I needed to be on my   own it wasn’t a problem either. We did our own thing. In school I liked to play with kids younger who were only interested to play and nothing else.

Kids my age talked about things which never interested me. I had one or two friends my age, only because they were not nosy. 

My friends talked about their extended family which was completely foreign to me. I was at times fascinated by their mention of cousins,aunts and uncles, I never knew I had. I remember asking my mom if I had aunts and uncles, I was happy to know I did, why don’t I see them was my next question. My mother explained because we are living far away from them, it was not possible to meet them.

My opportunity came when we all visited Bangladesh, I saw my uncles and aunts and cousins, I was delighted at the thought that I too would be able to go back and tell my friends about my uncles,aunts and cousins.

After my father passed away we came to Bangladesh to stay. I completed my high school exam privately as the local schools taught everything in Bengali, I knew the language but I wasn’t advanced in the subject to do my work in that medium. I studied in a convent where the medium of instruction was English.

In college I found the girls unfriendly, they treated me as if I arrived from a different planet. I spoke the local language without any effort. I didn’t try to speak English, only when we had English Language class. I did better than them because of my exposure to it was far earlier than them.

I felt some cold shoulders around me, it didn’t bother me I thought if they are happy to treat me like that I’m happy to stay by myself, it was only so many hours I’d be in school after that I’d be with my family, so these few hours is okay, I came to learn and there would be no damage to it no matter how the girls behaved.

I survived and will continue to do so regardless of how I’m treated!

nk: https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2014/06/23/365-days-writi…f-misfitsurvived,

-posts/

365 days Writing Prompt: Four Stars

Write a review of your life—– or the life of someone close to you— as if it were a movie or a book.

I  will write about someone who was very close to me. He was born in a village in Bangladesh, the name of the village is ‘Aburkandi’, how they chose the name is something I don’t know.

From very early in life he was a brilliant student, he didn’t have to pay tuition fees in school, he received a scholarship for all of his education.

He moved to a small town to continue his education, luckily his half brother lived there, so he lived with him until he finished his undergraduate degree.

After completing his degree he went to Calcutta( now Kolkata)to look for a job, he was offered a job at the post office, a few months later his services were borrowed by the ministry of defense for two months. His performance impressed the authorities, who decided to keep him.

He moved to Delhi where he went up the ladder of success and soon was promoted to the Assistant Secretary of defense.

His sister-in-law was impressed by his performance and felt her sister should be married to him. At first the parents declined their argument was they didn’t want two daughters to be married in the same family. Undaunted the sister-in -law kept pushing the marriage proposal until the parents gave in to her demand.

Soon after the young man was married to his sister-in-law’s sister.

While working the young man studied law, he felt it would be helpful in his job and it did.

He was interested in learning languages,besides Arabic, he learned Urdu and Persian. Since English was the medium of instruction he learned to speak the language fluently.

He had a number of children, he was always interested to see his children well-educated. His eldest son turned out to be a disappointment, he was one of those parents who didn’t like to force his children to do what they did not want to do.

He loved his children and always did what was best for them.

He fell severely ill, at the age of forty-seven he died, leaving behind his wife and  children.

https://sabethville.wordpress.com/2014/06/06/365-days-writi…mpt-four-stars/

 

DP Daily Prompt: Land Of Confusion

pad2014-s.png (308×60)

This is a good one, thank you for this prompt. Well to be completely honest, Mathematics did not give me hives, English did not make me scream. I loved English, I wasn’t scared of Math.

What did scare me was Physiology,yes I had this subject in school, the layers of the skin, and heart lungs and blood circulation gave me nightmares. No I did not do this in college it was in school, if you can believe it.

How did this happen, we were preparing for junior Cambridge exams in our school.

There was piano lessons too,I did not take it because the girls who had it said,the nuns would hit their fingers if they played the notes wrong. Hearing about it made my fingers sore,imagine if I was actually hit what would happen then.

But the positives in that school outweighed the negatives. We were a happy bunch,if we spoke Urdu we paid a fine,but that’s to be expected you do not go to an English school to be able to speak Urdu, we all spoke Urdu well.

We had school buses that were so long none of us wanted to go to the back,because when your turn came to get off you had to walk all of those yards to get to the front. Oh we only had one door which was in the front.

Sister Alavishes used to come running and would hit the girls who wouldn’t go to the back of the bus,she didn’t come inside the bus she took care of it from outside,the windows were open and she didn’t mind punching those who were breaking the rules.

I still think we had a lot of fun, we amazed our parents by speaking fluent English. What more could they want, the tuition fees they paid brought them good dividends and they never complained.

http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2014/04/02/prompt-land-of-confusion/