Language, No Barrier

By Anjali Mohapatra • March 2, 2015

Language, no barrier

So... What do you think? Who is a real smart person? A person who is well dressed, wearing costly foot-wear, speaking English fluently, and walks smartly? Well, invariably smartness is defined in these spoken base lines. But believe it or not, a real smart person is anybody, who can manage any odd situation cleverly, without having a single traits of above mentioned. Can you believe it? You have to, since it happened few years back in reality, with an elderly lady, who was not highly educated, didn't know a single word of English, a simple house wife having ten children. Because of her self-confidence, she had completed her world tour twice, once all alone, second time with her husband. It was a thrilling experience of her when she was on her first journey to U.S.A all alone, don't miss it. Please, go through it, you can explore something.

She was optimistic in her views, very very confident in her own action. Education was a dream land for her because it was not fully granted for the girls particularly, at that old time. Never she gave up the hope of learning, even though she was not going to any specific school to be educated. With her daily household work, she had a slate and a piece of chalk to continue her learning a,b,c,d till to her death. That was the magical energy which pushed her to accomplish one wonderful journey.

For the first time in her life, she was going abroad, that to, a place like U.S.A, without knowing a single word of abc or any other language except her mother-tongue.That is called a real courage! Isn't it? The moment she was lifting her eyes, she was surrounded by all new unknown strangers. Well, now let us see, how she managed her journey. She was thrilled. She never imagined a distance unknown journey, without her husband by her side. No doubt that she was little bit nervous, but her anxiety to see a new country and meet her daughter over there, was knew no bounds. Oh, yeah! She was ready. At last, the due date had come. The whole family had gone to the air-port to bid her farewell, of course for a short stay for three months. However, for her, it was like, she was going on an expedition. The moment she saw the huge aeroplane, her heart started pounding heavily. She was silent for a few moments. She had seen the aeroplane, but never before she was so close to it. Time came to depart from the dear ones. As she was told before, she proceeded towards the security check and after that ......she was in her own world of numbness, strangers, dumb world. Neither she could express her own words nor she could understand anyone's language. However, she built up her courage. She was looking here and there as if she was searching something. Boarding announcement was finished, somehow, she managed to short out her emigration formalities and slowly stepped towards the giant Lufthansa plane with other passengers.

'Oh,God! Where am I going? Am I riding the huge Garuda, bearer of Lord Vishnu or " Puspakjan of Ravana?" she thought to herself the moment she stepped into the plane. When all the formalities were over, the plane started on its flight path. Maybe, other passengers were habituated to flight, but it was absolutely new thrilling experience for her. She just closed her eyes out of fear and went on praying for a safe journey. She felt something unusual. When she opened her eyes, she couldn't believe herself. 'Oh, God!!! I am flying, flying in the midst of clouds.' Fortunately she had got the window seat. When she looked out through the window, she couldn't believe herself. According to her description, the whole sky was filled with white and somewhere brown clouds. Far away the sun's rays were scattered making some multi coloured clouds too. The scenery was awesome! She was lost in her own thought. It seemed to her as if the plane was slowly moving on a huge heap of cotton. Sometime, she was thinking the plane was playing hide and seek game with the clouds. Oh, God! It was incredible!

From Mumbai to USA, obviously it was a long long journey. Unfortunately, she kept the paper in her luggage where all minimum required translation of English to her mother tongue was written, provided by her husband. She was scared for a moment but next moment built up the courage and gave a smile to the air-hostess who was passing by. With courtesy, the air hostess smiled back and asked politely, 'Ma'am, can I help you?'. She put her finger on her throat and said in her broken English, 'dinki, dinki, dinki'. She had heard from her children sometimes asking for water to 'drink'. Since she could not pronounce it properly she uttered the word 'dinki'. The air hostess was amused with her indication. One minute later, she was served with water. So, thereafter, throughout the journey, she tried her best to get the things done by her simple gesture. Fortunately, her gesture was understood by others. At last, she landed on her destination. Well, the moment she arrived at U.S.A, she was escorted by her daughter and son-in-law. While staying over there, she enjoyed every bit of her time with fun and merriment. Even, she was so happy to see Disney Land, she used to tell, 'If ever I would get a chance to visit anywhere, I want to visit this place again and again.' She was absolutely delighted with the beauty of a number of tourist destinations of U.S.A. She had no problem at all to communicate with neighbours of her daughter. Mostly, they were Americans, but God knows, by what and how she managed to keep rapport with them. Anyway, after three months, she was prepared for her return journey.

It was once again a Lufthansa flight which she boarded on her return journey to her dear ones, living in India. At least, this time she was a little bit comfortable, because she had already covered one side journey. She was looking fresh, as if without any problem she could manage everything. Whoever she met, she gave a little smile. Oh, yes! No doubt it was a good strategy. Whenever you are among the strangers, smiling is the best and silent method to invite the people's attention towards you, isn't it? Well, well, now let us see what happened to our elderly lady in her return journey. Her next seat was occupied by a young Japanese lady. Barely she was in her twenties. She took out some snaps and showed to the Japanese girl. Immediately the young girl took the photos in her hand and saw it thoroughly, at least for courtesy sake. The old lady looked at the Japanese girl and then said, 'Annapurna...Puni..'putting her fingers on her own chest. The young girl grinned at her and replied with her own name, 'Yushuki'. She shook her body a little ahead and hugged her. That was a fantastic moment for both of them. They went on communicating with each other continuously with gesture only, no language was required for their relationship. It was really amazing!!! None of them could understand other's language, but they became very, very special friends. Ironically, their age difference was too much, yet they became too close to each other. Suddenly, the air hostess announced the emergency landing of the plane in Singapore, due to some technical problem of the left side wing. All the passengers were requested to get down from the plane and to take a short rest at the air port. She got down from the plane but this time she was holding the Japanese girl's hand tightly. Funniest part is that after some time, it was seen that she was combing Yusuki's hair. Yusuki was also showing her head like an obedient child with a smiling face. After long six hours, the passengers were called upon to board the aircraft and the plane took off. Eventually their journey came to an end and they parted with the promise to remain in contact.

Well, it was a remarkable journey for the elderly lady. For a few years, Yusuki was sending letters to her. She could never forget her experience inside the plane, the neighbours of her daughter at U.S.A, and particularly the amazing friendship with that young Japanese girl.

See, after reading this, what do you think? Is language a barrier for communicating with others? No, not at all, language is just an easy media through which you can express your views. It's just an easy way, otherwise, language is not a barrier for communicating people. God knows, what excellent code, method of gesture they used that they became best of friends without knowing a single alphabet of each other's language. Remember, every expression of yours, reveals your inside thought. However, that great smart lady is no more in this world, but she is and will be loved by her children forever.


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