The language enigma

For years I've walked past this building, always telling myself that I am going to come back here someday and take up one of their courses. I didn’t know then that this was some kind of a learning institute. The building only evoked a strong feeling of I-HAVE-go-inside-and-sit-here.

It is from this building, and from those years that a seed to learn Urdu was planted in my head, I guess. I even acted on it for a while, honestly. It helped that the husband had a similar thought, the linguistic couple that we are , and so we both set about learning it.

I don’t even want to blame the work, which never is so busy that I cannot follow her heart through the path of learning of any kind. It's just plain laziness, I guess, or that we were too young to be tied down to do just one thing over the weekends… Or it might be the sheer complexity of the language, the orientation of the alphabet, and the mere fact that you can't learn a language from a book! [You must look at my French and Spanish audio lessons!]

This was easily 7-8 years ago, and we were living lives of social-butterflies, or so I'd like to think. Now that we are older, and have more time to follow through on the various things we've wanted to do and learn over the years, one would think I'd get back to passions like this, long forgotten. Nope, it has still not changed. I will delve on this aspect of jumping from one hobby/thing to another at a much later point of time, but there is definitely something there… Some soul-searching has happened on that front already :-)

I digress… here it is, the place that I've always wanted to enter and learn. And finally, a couple of days ago, I did that. I said, I won't go far in life if I don’t enter a place just because I assume I won't be welcome there. I MUST act on it, and walked right into this building without even telling the husband who was blissfully walking beside me in the blistering sun, who then had to follow me with a smile, coz turns out I acted for both our younger selves. [Yeah, now would be the time to go Awwww :-P]

A sleepy teenager just woke up at my entering the building, gave me a tentative smile, and asked me to go inside. The husband stayed on to have a conversation with the boy. Inside, I saw two bright girls practicing calligraphy so intently, they were startled by my loud exclamations at the beauty of the things that adorned the walls… you know, the regular calligraphy stuff , but in Urdu, which added a whole new level of enigma and beauty to them. They patiently explained the system there - there are regular classes conducted everyday for 2 years post which you give an exhibition of all things you've learnt there. In a month, one can learn writing the alphabet, and there are great career opportunities for anyone wanting to pursue this. And you should've seen the glee in the girls' faces as they were explaining this to a visibly spellbound, awestruck and open-mouthed me.

I left the place , mentally kicking my younger self for not having followed this up when I lived close-by, and moved on to the busy road telling myself that am going to learn this someday. At least the alphabet.

That gets me back to the title, there is a beautiful enigma around things that we don’t understand, no?


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