Hey awrite there mates?! Sorry for the long delay in typing. I am severely contemplating all possible meanings of the song “take my breath away” here in quite possibly the southern most habitable part of the World for an Indian-Bengali. A little south from here means I will be living with the Penguins, which romantic though it sounds, is practically impossible for the bunch of rice eating people who likes to wear sweaters at 24 degree C. Other simultaneous reasons include settling down in a new city, having no net connection yet, filling up over sixty seven forms per hour for a variety of purposes, scholarship application, lack of oxygen and breathlessness walking up and down a hill everyday, and tragedy of my sad experimentation with my hair. The last bit is particularly grim as my hair is now not exactly spike, as intended, nor is it wavy as usual, but a halfhearted cross of both, whereby making me resemble the closest primate relative of an electrocuted punk cockatoo. Anyway, such is life. In the words of one of my favourite British movie rock-star/character Aldous Snow, “Listen, don’t let ’em grind you down…take it easy, eh?”
Dunedin is truly a beautiful city, like an old 19th century Scottish town with all modern technologies, if I may call a place with a hundred thousand two legged living beings of all possible species, a city, in the true sense of the term. We have a hundred thousand people in any neighbourhood of Calcutta or Bombay, frankly. I’m not a great fan of crowds, as ofcourse most of you know, but for the first time in my life I am actually dying for some action. Like a punch in your belly while boarding train or bus, a violent hurried nudge by an overzealous grampa on a sidewalk, constant honking even when the traffic is moving, and occasional intimidating shouts and curses almost on the verge of fistfight if someone overtakes you, inevitably without any signal. Things are different here. Peaceful, disciplined and quiet, eerily quiet at times. I am also rediscovering small joys like taking a shower in hot boiling water which is pure bliss in this BLOODY GODAWFUL COLD AND DAMP weather. People are very friendly, and take that from me, cause I know that is a major concern for everyone back where I belong. I never faced a single racist remark, tone, discrimination, behavioral change, or even those dirty looks. Infact, on the contrary, they are so helpful and polite that it looks almost surreal. I caused a major national crisis in a supermarket, when I asked for the directions to the nearest internet cafe, and the counter girl couldn’t reply. Within minutes hundreds of helpful citizens, shoppers and morning walkers of advanced age gathered around me, offering various advice and apologising profusely for not being able to help me out. They take the “ambassador of the city” thing, quite seriously. Really, can you even imagine that in any big city? Not atleast from the part of the world I come from.
But that’s not it. This post is not going to be about Dunedin, I just got deviated. It’s only a week I came, and I shouldn’t be writing about the city or forming any notions. Safe to say, that Dunedin is a very soothing and pleasant experience thus far. What I am here for though is to write a World Watch…probably after the last one I wrote during the second world war. Kidding…I was not born then…but yea, since I can’t tweet or update the FB page with World news regularly, I reckon this is the best time for an update. Yes, I am noble like that. So here they are!
1. In another sweet fruit of la revolucion in Egypt, three Korean tourists were kidnapped by gunmen along with their guides in a rapidly deteriorating post-Mubarak era. Interesting to note how Koreans always go for tourism in places like Afghanistan, Iraq, and Somalia. Serious Adrenaline junkies, these Koreans.
2. In a remarkable feat displaying the strictest sense of propriety, three Indian ministers from a morally conservative and fiscally right wing party quit after caught watching P#RN in a State Legislative Assembly.
3. In USA, a certain Rick Santorum (DON’T Google Santorum, honestly!) got a mighty reception in a conservative action committee meeting. This after he said that female terminator soldiers (NOT Hillary C in a pantsuit) are not fit for frontline combat roles. Really, USA Republicans are probably the only right wing crowd who don’t value genuine job creators like Mitt Romney, or worldly-wise Jon Huntsman.
4. The great Gulf News, remember? All those scathing op-eds on the brutality of
human oddity one man circus Gaddafi, imploring NATO to attack urgently, and how they immediately changed after a brilliant display of skulduggery and turncoat-ism after the first bombs were dropped by the alliance? They are at it again.
5. Finally, the best for the last. Some people have SERIOUS issues with nomenclature. The Headline Writer’s greatest delight.
That’s’bout it! Those who believe in God, do pray for my scholarship. Those who don’t, take a swig in my name from the nearest pub. So long and stay classic, Planet Earth!