About me

Nov 23, 2010

another Fall in US

This is my second fall semester, it was the last fall when I arrived here at college park, MD and at first sight I loved my campus,  then it was a matter of time to get used to the new people. Now more than one year has passed and even though it's not my home, I kind of feel comfortable in this nomadic life, may be I can stay anywhere  ( given I have a high speed internet connection ) !
The fall colors are as nice as ever and some nights the sky is so clear I can see the milky way, may be that's one of the advantages of living in a village-like area.

Nov 19, 2010

Poems of Sukanta Bhattacharya online

Can someone tell me when it is the time to write reports or work on homeworks-assignments , why do I just hide from all those and start digging the web  ( because I left my real books back home) for poems? Tonight I suddenly remembered Sukanta, and searched if I could read his work online and I did not totally fail :) here   I found some of the works of Sukanta , the Bengali poet who died at a very young age, and had a dreamy face!

I am very upset that this website does not contain the great poem "Durmor" , may be because this site is maintained by non-Bangladeshi and the poem is about Bangladesh !  However, it was nice to read one of my all-time fav again after a long time,  "The Age of 18"   , when I was a in high school, I always thought when I would become 18, I will be like that.  I was not happy when I found this great piece of poetry is included in textbook ( which means a large number of people will start hating it), I managed to retain my love for this poem in spite of reading it as a part of my exam in High school.

  আঠারো বছর বয়স( The Age of 18)

আঠারো বছর বয়স কী দুঃসহ
স্পর্ধায় নেয় মাথা তোলবার ঝুঁকি,
আঠারো বছর বয়সেই অহরহ
বিরাট দুঃসাহসেরা দেয় যে উঁকি ।

আঠারো বছর বয়সের নেই ভয়
পদাঘাতে চায় ভাঙতে পাথর বাধা,
এ বয়সে কেউ মাথা নোয়াবার নয় -
আঠারো বছর বয়স জানে না কাঁদা ।

 এ বয়স জানে রক্তদানের পুণ্য
বাষ্পের বেগে স্টিমারের মতো চলে,
প্রাণ দেওয়া-নেওয়া ঝুলিটা থাকে না শূন্য
সঁপে আত্মাকে শপথের কোলাহলে ।

আঠারো বছর বয়স ভয়ঙ্কর
তাজা তাজা প্রাণে অসহ্য যন্ত্রণা,
এ বয়সে প্রাণ তীব্র আর প্রখর
এ বয়সে কানে আসে কত মন্ত্রণা ।

আঠারো বছর বয়সে আঘাত আসে
অবিশ্রান্ত; একে একে হয় জড়ো, 
এ বয়স কালো লক্ষ দীর্ঘশ্বাসে
এ বয়স কাঁপে বেদনায় থরোথরো ।

তবু আঠারোর শুনেছি জয়ধ্বনি,
এ বয়স বাঁচে দুর্যোগে আর ঝড়ে,
বিপদের মুখে এ বয়স অগ্রণী
এ বয়স তবু নতুন কিছু তো করে ।

এ বয়স জেনো ভীরু, কাপুরুষ নয়
পথ চলতে এ বয়স যায় না থেমে,
এ বয়সে তাই নেই কোনো সংশয়-
এ দেশের বুকে আঠারো আসুক নেমে

a funny poem by Sukumar Ray

so I found this website containing some poems of Sukumar Ray ,  ( another one in this online collection  and also here with some poems )he is part of the childhood of all Bengali children, and if not, then I really feel sorry for those children who spent their childhood without reading works of Sukumar Ray. This one is about the 'helplessness' of a voracious eater around food and how he promises not to eat like a glutton and then breaks the promise being helpless !


  -সুকুমার রায়

বসি বছরের পয়লা তারিখে
মানের খাতায় রাখিলাম লিখে-
"সহজ উদরে ধরিবে যেটুক্‌,
সেইটুকু খাব হব না পেটুক ।"
মাস দুই যেতে খাতা খুলে দেখি,
এরি মাঝে মন লিখিয়াছে একি !
লিখিয়াছে, "যদি নেমন্তন্নে
কেঁদে ওঠে প্রাণ লুচির জন্যে,
উচিত কি হবে কাঁদান তাহারে ?
কিম্বা যখন বিপুল আহারে,
তেড়ে দেয় পাতে পোলাও কালিয়া
পায়েস অথবা রাবড়ি ঢালিয়া-
তখন কি করি, আমি নিরুপায় !
তাড়াতে না পারি, বলি আয় আয়,
ঢুকে আয় মুখে দুয়ার ঠেলিয়া
উদার রয়েছি উদর মেলিয়া !"

Oct 3, 2010

me at GHC

IMG_8248, originally uploaded by geeklinda.
Four awesome days at Atlanta for the Grace Hopper Celebration of women in computing. Had a great time, now berried with homeworks and projects and undone laundries.
No need to mention how I enjoyed with my friends, but I also enjoyed my Hopper assignments and blogging and tweeting about the selected sessions as a community blogger . I could not attend all the sessions , but I was looking forward to the GVU center tour and the HCI Track on Friday and the reality was more than my expectation. And thanks to Kathy who gave us a ride to GVU center. The sponsor night at the Georgia Aquarium was one of the best parts of this whole week full of events. The food at Hyatts was not of my taste so we went to have dinner at the Metro Cafe Diner very near to our hotel and enjoyed their karaoke.  Poken drew  a  lot of attention this time, someone lost her poken at the dance floor and the DJ announced, "here is a Token.." and we all cried out "this is POKEN, not Token ", haha ..

Aug 25, 2010

Some dance to remember, some dance to forget

Summarizing my summer 2010:

  Awesome NYC tour, met Kashpia and Rima.

  Met Tanima, Enamul , Shafi and Shoshi after a long time , had a great dinner with them .

  Celebrated 4th of July with Sheetal, Nawrin, Reza and Zaman. Great view of fireworks at Penn's landing. Totally exploited our Freedom of Speech :D

  Student volunteer at KDD. Met Tozammel, Nayeem vai , Hassan vai.

  DC tour with Kashpia and Irina. DC mall is way more beautiful at night.

  With Lily apu and Ridwan : National Arboretum, DC Zoo.

  George town canal tour : I was super bored, a total waste of time, but the pictures turned out to be nice and colorful.

 And  a few days ago, my mom sent a package with new clothes and shoes for me from Dhaka :) along came the 'achars', mango and plum ( boroi ) .

And this is my second Ramadan in USA, after 3 days of fasting I did not continue, may be Iftar was my only motivation for fasting. So no delicious iftar, no fasting. May Allah forgive my soul.  I thought I could complete all the procedures to get Maryland driving license during this summer vacation, but nope, seems like I have to wait more for that.  My cooking 'skill' improved ( leaving me with some extra pounds ), I tried to cook new items.  I finished watching 'Californication', and started watching 'Weeds'.   I restarted to learn French, but it's not my cup of tea :( Mandarin is easier.
I wonder how these three months just past by ... getting over is not that easy though, specially when you don't want to.

Jul 18, 2010

Rose and Lavender

yesterday while waiting for the bus way home I happened to meet a girl with a bunch of dried lavender plants in her backpack and she was giving away to the people around .. there were too many, I also took some , it smelled wonderful .. soft and warm ..

she asked where I am from and after knowing that she surprised me with the question " amar naam golap , tomar naam kee ? ( My name is rose, what's ur name ? ) " - I definitely did not expect to hear Bangla from an American girl . . wow .. so her name was Rose and I told her my name and her Bangla accent was pretty good , she visited Shantiniketon and learnt to speak basic Bangla only in three months, according to her this is a simple and easy language, .. and she taughte her sister the word 'tik-tiki' (house gecko), tiktiki, tiktiki ...

Jul 16, 2010

New York Nostalgia

"If you are in USA and you have not seen NYC, you have seen nothing", I was told so many good things and equal amount of bad things about NYC - so it became a must-do on my todo list  .. there were hundreds of reasons not to go ( "it is way dirty, not worth your time .. bla bla ") and thousands to go ( "so full of life, places to see and shop ...") - then someday someone told me it was 'something'  ( I forgot the exact words, stupid me and my short term memory ) to see the view from the Top of the Rock and from Brooklyn bridge ---  just then all other millions of reasons just disappeared and I was ready to start  -  so New York, here I come; but it is never the places to see , but the people who we see with that makes everything precious ,  so I waited, and my patience made it happen, my friend from NYC invited me and thanks Heaven, she is crazy ( therefore a perfect companion ), she is a New Yorker and she knows and loves it, otherwise what could I do as being a mere tourist .
There are so many places to see and I knew I need to make a priority-list but then it looses the charm of spontaneity;  during those three days, even after waking up late in the morning and feeling dizzy after having an anti-allergic medicine , we covered more places than we enlisted .. without following any hard and fast planning schedule.  We were returning home after visiting the Statue of Liberty, and then we thought, why not just try to get on the Brooklyn bridge ?  and then after half-way down the bridge, we realized, ok, we still have some energy left, why not just walk the whole bridge and step on to Brooklyn , ya , that's my kind of 'Planning' .

Another day we were walking towards nearby subway after visiting MOMA ( and it was Picasso week, awesome ! ) and then I found myself standing beside the statue of Atlas, " Are we in the Rockefeller plaza ? ! Why not go up and see the 360 view " - so we climbed up ( of course with the elevator ) , from late afternoon to the night-break..saw how the bright shining mighty sun turned into a soft mild reddish ball and hid itself into Hudson .. we could stay longer, but the view ( there was 'something' in the moment ) made us too vulnerable ; we needed to recover and come down to earth. Now what can be the best way to 'instant brute-force recovery' from emotional disaster than shopping ! there comes Times Square and all the surrounding fashion houses . I wonder how watching your reflection with a new look ( yeah, inside the trial room ) , buying a new outfit ( even if you would never wear it again) can instill the feeling of --well -- 'to be in charge', "ok, may be the world does not turn around me , and I cannot get whatever I wish for, but at least I can choose something for me from this humongous pile and make it my own and throw it into my closet" . When the salespeople say how you look so gorgeous and pretty with that dress  you always know they are just trying to make a sale, but doesn't it still make you smile ?

While wandering about the streets ,we walked past St Thomas Church but did not do inside .  Then came the big one, St Patrick's Cathedral, this was the first time I ever stepped inside a church ( my first air travel..to USA across Atlantic, my first church visit- St Patrick's , now I am getting kind of out of the world) and wow..the atmosphere inside was purely mystic, I just loved it, it was ok to take picture inside but my camera died. So my unreliable memory wad the only way I could rely upon at that moment -  the architecture and the devotion of people. I did not lit a candle, God knows what I want even before I myself become aware of my own thoughts, so why bother .. Kashpi lit a candle, no idea what she wished for. I don't feel like praying around other people , I rather prefer to keep talking to God as my imaginary friend ..

After I returned people asked me how did I like it, what can I say.. I felt that it was wonderful to visit but I cannot live there ( living there for long would just make all the good things dull and accent the bad ones ) , so true, too much distraction ( not suitable for a grad student), and it is indeed not well kept, DC is much cleaner and people are definitely more careful in following rules and that makes life much easier when you know what to expect from people. But at times it is necessary to experience the unexpected, so wait Manhattan, just wait for me a bit more ..

হ য ব র ল - ১

এক সাথে অনেক কাজের চিন্তা করলে শেষ পর্যন্ত কছুই করা হয় না , কাজের আগ্রহও কমে যাচ্ছে .. নিজেকে বুঝাচ্ছি নিজেই , আবার কিছুক্ষণ পর সব ভুলে youtube এ গান দেখা শুরু করছি .. কোনো কোনো সমস্যা থাকে যার কোনো সমাধান করা যায়না , তখন সেটাকে পাশ কাটিয়েই বাকি সব করতে হয়, কিন্তু মনে হচ্ছে না বেপারটা এত সহজ হবে ! চরম বিরক্তি লাগছে ..  এক মাস হয়ে গেল এক লাইন কোড ও লিখি নি  ... অথচ এমন না যে খুব আরামে আছি .. facebooking / youtubing  / tweeting  -  দিন কাবার - তাতেই একেবারে মহাক্লান্ত হয়ে ঘুমে কাদা  | আজকে ভরে নাকি আবার ভূমিকম্প হয়েছে, কিছুই তের পাইনি, ঘুম থেকে উঠে facebook  এর homepage রিফ্রেশ দিয়ে মানুষের স্ট্যাটাস দেখে জানতে পারলাম, তারপর CNN এ পরে দেখি কিছু লোকজন ( মানে আমেরিকার সাধারণ জনগণ যারা গুড়ি গুড়ি বৃষ্টিকে thunder storm  বলে ) এই নিয়ে বিষম চিন্তিত, এক জন আবার ভয় পেয়ে মন্তব্য করেছে যে মেরিল্যান্ড স্টেট কি এই ভুমিকম্পে অতলান্তিকে ডুবে যাবে কিনা !!! ৩.৬ মাত্রাতেই এত ভয় ...

অনেক দিন তো শুদ্ধ বাংলায় কারো সাথে কথা বলি না , মনে হচ্ছে ব্লগ লিখেই ভাষা চর্চা চালু রাখতে হবে..আজকাল তো দেখি আবার অনেক বাংলা কমুনিটি ব্লগ এও লোকজন এতটাই বিরক্তিকর নিম্নস্তরের বাংলা লেখে -- ভাষা মাত্রেই পরিবর্তনশীল  , কিন্তু এরা মনে হয় জোর করে পরিবর্তনের রেখাটাকে নিচের দিকেই নামিয়ে আনতে চাচ্ছে |  একবার আমার প্রফেসর এর  কাছে যেন খুব গর্ব করে বলছিলাম ইংরেজ, পার্সি কত লোকে বঙ্গদেশ দখল করলো , তাও আমরা বাংলাতেই কথা বলি এখনো, পৃথিবীর অনেক দেশই উপনিবেশিকতায় আক্রান্ত হবার পর নিজের ভাষা হারিয়ে এখন দখলদারদের ভাষাকেই নিজের ভাষা করে নিয়েছে, উত্তর আমেরিকায় ইংলিশ আর দক্ষিনে স্প্যানিশ | আমার প্রফেসর জিগেশ করলো " বাংলা কি কোনো মৃতপ্রায় ভাষা ? কখনো শুনি নি এই ভাষার কথা " , শুনে তো আমি অবাক ! কী বলে এই লোক ! আর যাই হোক, জনসংখ্যা বৃদ্ধির কল্যানে আমরা পৃথিবীর ষষ্ঠ ভাষা , তারপর বুঝলাম যে উনি ' বাংলা '  নামের কোনো ভাষা চিনেন না , তবে ' বেঙ্গলি ' বলার পর বুঝছেন, এই ভাবে কি বাংলা ' বেঙ্গলি'  হয়ে যাবে ? মেজাজটাই খারাপ হয়ে গেল ..

Feb 5, 2010

Exam , Grades, Future ..

got my grades for the Artificial Intelligence Planing course , I took this course on last semester and the exam was taken last Saturday when it was snowing heavily outside.  I am surprised at my capability of getting such a poor grade , so far this is the least grade I ever got for any course, hahaa , don't know what's on my future.  Seems like AI is not for me after all. Before working on artificial intelligence, I need to improve my own natural intelligence at the first place.

Snowy weekend, foggy thoughts

Again snow storm alert, again the campus is closed. So got an extra day for this weekend, for me it's time for blogging ;already done with 'facebooking' and 'tweeting' since I got myself up from sleep and after 2 more hours managed to got up from the bed . After enjoying my pancake breakfast , having my tea ( it was delicious ) and finishing all the 'pending' Egyptology video I had been planning to watch, I started to think, so what's next ? I have my projects and assignments due, but somehow they never fall into the 'things to be done next' category , even though they are actually the things MUST be done, I prefer to keep them away from my mind as long as I can. Hence my today's next task can be to prepare some hot and spicy meal, seems like a good idea, but the only problem is I am not a fan of my own cooking. Last weekend was awesome, covered all with snowflakes I managed to arrive at DC, spent some time working with the CrisisCommons CrisisWiki team for the current Haiti earthquake, and above all ( I am sooo selfish) passed the rest of the weekend at Lily apu's place and enjoyed all her delicious Bangladeshi food. This weekend I can call Poppy apu and attack her kitchen, wow, I am now getting really inspired, the devil on my left shoulder is now laughing out loud ( just waiting for the snowfall to get a bit benign ) ! Since when I became such a foodie !!

This week I happened to taste Panettone which is a special kind of Italian bread stuffed with raisin, marmalade etc. and I really liked it and next time I am going to do my grocery shopping I will buy one for sure. Also had ice cream from the campus dairy and that was nice too, but American sandwich still does not suit me at all. When it comes to buying food , Taco Bell and Panda Express are keeping me alive.

No more thoughts of food, not now , God help my spirit ... give me some other Food for Thought !

Last evening I missed the Bangladeshi student Association meeting, I hope to attend the next one, we are planning for arranging a cultural program for Bangla New Year, the programme is entitled the Baishakhi Bang, mainly organized by American Born Bangladeshi students. So there is little Bangla but I am hopeful, at least they are trying something. The Bangladeshi Embassy is also planning a programme for the celebration of International Mother language day on 21st February. If weather permits I hope to attend the program. Now I am confident with the Metro system, having visited Washington DC several times by Metro I am trying to make a mental map of the place ; as I do not own a GPS, and do not like to carry printed map, a mental map is the most convenient option for me and I also like the word "Mental Map" ( or just being influenced by my professor :D)

Speaking of Metro reminded me of my actual plan for this weekend, to go to Virginia , to visit my school friend Irina, but snowfall made me cancel this plan. do not know when I will be actually able to meet her.

Works of Rabindranath online

Looking for something like this for a long time, especially after coming to USA, I could not bring the Geetobitan, or Golpoguchchha , not even a single book of Rabindranath . The work that is being done by the West Bengal Language Academy is really praise worthy, I hope the Bangla Academy of Bangladesh will take similar actions to preserve the great works of our greatest intellectuals in the same way so it can be accessed any time from any where .

The link for the works of Rabindranath:   http://rabindra-rachanabali.nltr.org/node/2

It includes his novels, poetry, songs, short stories and essays, his letters of Chhinnopotro is not included yet. As everything is in Unicode Bangla, it is easily viewable via most browsers.  Very excited to see this site.

Another online archive ( I like this one more ) of Rabindranath's work : http://www.tagoreweb.in/ 

Jan 2, 2010

পায়ের তলায় অতলান্তিক

Web এ Key West এর ছবি দেখে আগেই মুগ্ধ হয়েছিলাম, এবার যাওয়ারও ব্যবস্থা হয়ে গেল শেষ পর্যন্ত, তাও কিনা একেবারে আশা ছেড়ে দেবার পর | Miami থেকে tri-rail র করে Boca Raton, ট্রেন এ বসে মনে পড়ে গেল সিলেট যাত্রার কথা , এরকমই সবুজের সারি জানালা দিয়ে এসে ভেসে যাচ্ছিল | তার মাঝে আবার বৃষ্টি , station এ নেমে একটু বৃষ্টিতে হাঁটাহাঁটি. সন্ধ্যায় Ocean's drive এ ঘুরে এলাম, আলিশান বাসা বাড়ি দেখলাম, আর তারপর ফিরে এসে রন্ধনযজ্ঞ | পর দিন Key West যাব এই উত্তেজনায় রাতে ঘুমই এলোনা | রওনা দিতে দিতে আটটাই বেজে গেল. কমপক্ষে ৪ ঘন্টা তো লাগবেই যেতে. কাজেই গাড়িতে বসে গলা ফাটিয়ে গান না ধরলে কেমন হয় ! Walmart এ নামলাম মাঝে সবাই, খাবার দাবার ও কিছু কিনলাম, সাথে একটা চকলেট কেক আর জন্মদিনের কার্ড |

Key Largo, Islamorada ছাড়িয়ে চলে এলাম Seven mile Bridge এর উপর, ব্রিজের পাশে গাড়ি থামিয়ে সবাই নেমে গেলাম কাছের সৈকত এ, পায়ের তলায় অতলান্তিক , মাথার উপরে আকাশ; পুরো পৃথিবীটাই তো এখন আমাদের | পানি তেমন ঠান্ডা ছিল না তাই ঝাপাঝাপি চলল কিছুক্ষণ | তারপর সৈকত এর একটা কুড়ের ছাউনিতে বসে কেক কাটার পালাও শেষ হলো | এর পর আবার যাত্রা শুরু, মেক্সিকো উপসাগরের রূপে মোহাবিষ্ট একদল পাগলের এবারের গন্তব্য Key West এর , আরো ভালো ভাবে বলতে গেলে আমেরিকার শেষ প্রান্ত |