[Assam] Story for Grant/ A Granduncle's story
barua25 at hotmail.com
Thu Oct 5 00:12:53 EDT 2006
Thanks. You may not realize but both the stories (yours and your brother's) will make good entries in some future 'Namti Century Book' to be published in the 900th year of its establishment of Namti (whenever that is: 2130?).
BTW is there a river called Namti in Namti? I wonder how the name was evolved. You may know that both the two phrases in the word Nam-ti means water in Bodo language.
The word Nam as found in Namsai, Namrup, Namsang, etc means water in Bodo language.
So also the word Ti as found in Namti, Tiok, Tipam, Tirap etc means water in Tai language.
Namti must be founded after the coming of the Ahoms sometime in the 13th century.
Just some stray thoughts.
----- Original Message -----
From: "Chan Mahanta" <cmahanta at charter.net>
To: <assam at assamnet.org>
Sent: Tuesday, October 03, 2006 9:28 AM
Subject: [Assam] Story for Grant/ A Granduncle's story
> Hi Grant:
> Here is a story from my childhood for you. It is kind of long, but I
> hope you would like it:
> I was about eight years old at the time. Our school was about half a
> mile from home. It was a small, one roomed hut, with dirt floor,
> mud-plastered bamboo walls and thatched roof framed with bamboo.
> Thatch is a kind of long and sturdy grass, which people used to make
> roofs with, after drying them. We had two teachers and two
> blackboards, where about fifty pupils from Grades A, B, 1st, 2nd and
> 3rd. sat, in different groups, on the dirt floor,on mats that we
> brought with us from home. There were no bathrooms and no drinking
> water ,other than a pond in the front yard, where we drank from on
> hot days, with our hands cupped together.
> When we were in second grade ( I think), there was a vaccination
> drive by the State Public Health Department, funded by the World
> Health Organization, for immunizing children against the dreaded
> disease tuberculosis ( TB). The vaccine was called BCG, short for
> Bacillus Calmett-Guerin. The vaccination was done at another little
> school about two miles away from ours. All of us kids and the
> teachers walked about a mile and a half along the little but historic
> dirt road, that linked a large number of little villages separated by
> rice paddies, which ran from the capital of the Kingdom to the
> mountains in the south, and was called Khorikotia Ali ( Woodcutter's
> Trail). From the road we took a detour of another half a mile or so
> to the vaccination site along a railroad track.
> We got our shots. OUCH--it stung too,but I did not cry.Then we were
> heading back home in groups of twos and threes and even more. After
> we got off from the railroad tracks and got back on Woodcutter's
> Trail, I got separated from the other kids who went to their homes in
> a different direction and I was trudging along the road all by
> myself. All of a sudden I heard a strange, beep-beep-beep sound
> coming from the rear, which was getting louder by the moment. It
> that the sound was from something over the road. I looked back and
> saw nothing but the sound was getting very loud and scary. Suddenly I
> saw this huge dragonfly looking thing with a large bulb like head
> appear over the groves of bamboo tree-tops that line the
> roadway,flying, it seemed, straight towards me. And that noise, now
> ear-splitting, going braap-braap-braap-braap ---!
> Panic struck me!
> I ran, as fast as my little legs would let me, towards the only house
> on my right about a hundred yards away, surrounded by waterlogged
> rice paddies. Thinking back, I probably ran that distance faster than
> anyone I would have ever known. I reached the gate, which was made
> of horizontal bamboo poles spaced about a foot or so apart on bamboo
> posts with holes in them, and are called 'nongola' in Assamese, my
> native language. To open the gate you slide the poles through the
> holes. But there was no time for that. I slipped right through the
> gaps and crossed the little front yard and almost flew into the
> house, struggling for breath. In those days and even today, people in
> the villages of Assam leave their front doors open. There is no fear
> of strangers . And there is always someone in the house. Since there
> were no door-bells, and knocking on mud-plastered walls or the woven
> bamboo-mat door panel don't make much of a sound, if a stranger comes
> visiting, he or she would make a coughing sound or clear the throat
> to indicate there is someone at the door. Later I learnt that city
> folks made fun of that coughing sound as the "Assamese calling-bell".
> Anyway, to make a long story short, the man of the house found me,
> this breathless kid barging into the house with panic in his eyes,
> just about when this dragon-fly-from-hell flew past the house. He
> knew what was coming after me.
> He told me it was kind of a 'ura-jahaaz'( flying ship). He also knew
> who I was, since took his bullock cart along the trail by our house
> every now and then to the railroad station, carrying old ladies to
> the train, or delivering rice or firewood to the business-people who
> lived near the railroad station, and we would always ask him where he
> is going or what he is delivering in his ox-cart.
> He told me not to worry now and go on home.
> That evening, my older cousin,who passed away a couple of years back,
> told me that the scary, giant dragonfly was a helicopter. An oil
> company owned it and it was making seismological surveys looking for
> oil. Later on they found oil near there, and today it is called the
> Geleki Oilfields.
> Now I hope you won't make fun of St. Louis Koka calling me such a
> scardy-cat, OK :-)?
> Take care.
> assam mailing list
> assam at assamnet.org
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
More information about the assam