Posts Tagged ‘curiosity’

The forever path

November 11, 2011

I’d like to share this photo of some of us at Sultanpur, Delhi…I like the feel of the photograph!

blbs sltnpr 011111

Nature’s path is unending…
Delightful suprises in store…
We follow the road, wending
Our way, forever more!

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Oho info

November 11, 2011

Still on the subject of social conversation….

Some people feel that they MUST make conversation, and this takes the form of asking for information which could not be of ANY possible relevance to them. I know an elderly gentleman who seems so insatiably curious about the minutest details of the lives of the people he is speaking to. As soon as the initial “hello”s are over, he will start off: “So, are you married?” “Yes”. “How many children?” “Two.” (probably here the other person, if they are like me, is fighting down an insane desire to say Fourteen.)”And where are they living?” “In the US.” “WHERE in the US?” “One in Dallas and one in Kalamazoo.” “Do they live in houses or apartments?” “Apartments”. “How many floors?”….and so it goes.

And for every answer, the gentleman looks highly interested, and before adding the next question, responds with one sound that takes the place of a word: “Oho!” (Meaning, “appadiyaa” in Tamizh or “houthaa” in Kannada, or “is that so?” or “oh, really?” in English.)

I am NOT joking, this gentleman asked my daughter how many balconies she had in her flat and how many potted plants she had on the balcony. She lives in St Louis and I do not envisage him, over 80 years old now, ever visiting to verify the answer. But…he is making conversation, and is interested. EVERYTHING is grist to his curiosity/conversation mill. “How does your husband go to work?” ” He takes the car.” “Oho….does he have a driver?” “Yes.” “Oho. Is the driver married?” (I kid you not.)

So now, when any of us gets information that is of no use to us whatsoever, we designate it “OHO info”! I was just retailing to KM the domestic help-related travails of my neighbour, and after listening to me, KM smiled, and with a twinkle, said, “oHO!” and we both cracked up!

The Dreamcatcher

July 27, 2011

In my cousin’s car, I found a decoration that I was curious about:

dreamcatcher 240711 ny

When I asked him about it, he told me that it was an Indian dreamcatcher. That intrigued me, and just now (to avoid the work of unpacking or sorting mail etc) I googled for it, and got

The Wiki entry about the Dreamcatcher

How lovely is the thought that hanging one above the bed of a child will “catch” the nightmares and prevent the child from being distressed by them! Here’s the quotation from American ethnographer

Frances Densmore :

“It was said that they “caught any harm that might be in the air as a spider’s web catches and holds whatever comes in contact with it.”

I wish I could have a Realitycatcher over my bed….I’d be spared a lot of harmful, not-nice reality that I don’t want to face! The taxes that I must file, the death of a neighbour, bad health…oh, the Realitycatcher would be saturated soon, I suppose. 🙂

Cannonballs and Curiosities….

September 15, 2008

Had a great weekend (as I hope you did, I am such a polite person) between barcamp, a grihapravEsham, and a very good play….but on Friday, I went to visit ATREE , and on the way, got this great snap of…A TREE…. which explains why the Cannonball Tree is so called….

You can see one flower near the top left-hand-side of the snap, but the wiki entry that you get when you click on the tree name gives good photographs of the lovely flowers of this tree, which we call the nAgalinga tree. The flowers have such a lovely, faint, delicate scent….

But I couldn’t help also ..er…noticing the notice behind the tree…. the word “curio” in English means, objets d’art, small artefacts that are not of particular use, but beautiful in and of themselves. So of course, we keep confusing the word, and this particular shop-owner has become quite honest and decided to call them “curious items”, not “curios”!

Or does he mean that those wares in his shop will be very curious about finding things about us when we enter and ask us a lot of nosy,prying questions…? (Imagine a ghastly “glass Taj Mahal” asking me, the minute I enter, “Why have you come in if you don’t like me? Do you think you can get anything cheap here, apart from the quality of the items here? And why do you want to buy a cheap gift? Why can’t you be generous?”)

Though I must say, the curious thing about some of the items I see in shops is, why on earth anyone would want to pay good money for them….

OHO info

October 26, 2006

…..

Still on the subject of social conversation….

Some people feel that they MUST make conversation, and this takes the form of asking for information which could not be of ANY possible relevance to them. I know an elderly gentleman who seems so insatiably curious about the minutest details of the lives of the people he is speaking to. As soon as the initial “hello”s are over, he will start off: “So, are you married?” “Yes”. “How many children?” “Two.” (probably here the other person, if they are like me, is fighting down an insane desire to say Fourteen.)”And where are they living?” “In the US.” “WHERE in the US?” “One in Dallas and one in Kalamazoo.” “Do they live in houses or apartments?” “Apartments”. “How many floors?”….and so it goes.

And for every answer, the gentleman looks highly interested, and before adding the next question, responds with one sound that takes the place of a word: “Oho!” (Meaning, “appadiyaa” in Tamizh or “houthaa” in Kannada, or “is that so?” or “oh, really?” in English.)

I am NOT joking, this gentleman asked my daughter how many balconies she had in her flat and how many potted plants she had on the balcony. She lives in St Louis and I do not envisage him, over 80 years old now, ever visiting to verify the answer. But…he is making conversation, and is interested. EVERYTHING is grist to his curiosity/conversation mill. “How does your husband go to work?” ” He takes the car.” “Oho….does he have a driver?” “Yes.” “Oho. Is the driver married?” (I kid you not.)

So now, when any of us gets information that is of no use to us whatsoever, we designate it “OHO info”! I was just retailing to KM the domestic help-related travails of my neighbour, and after listening to me, KM smiled, and with a twinkle, said, “oHO!” and we both cracked up!