Saturday, October 9, 2010

The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy

Hi friends,
Im not a professional book critic. But I just wanted to share this awesome book with you. The Scarlet pimpernal. Those who are from X std Matriculation board of Tamil Nadu wud have already read this story. The time in the story is 18th century England and the story moves across English Channel.

The social life in England, more specifically in London at that time was clearly put in words such that you can easily imagine it. French Revolution was at its peak and aristocrats were being continuously caught and guillotined. The Frenchies didnt consider children and noble aristocrats also. Im neither a capitalist nor a communist or a revolutionist. I strive to be a humanist which leads me to think that nobles should be spared. Thats what the Hero of this story achieves. Dover, in England and Calais, in France are two towns from where you can reach the other country in the shortest span of time and distance. These two towns play a major role in this story. It is after reading this story, I started liking England, its social culture and manners, gallantry etc. I started liking beaches, sea and oceans after reading this. To put simply, this book taught me how to imagine.

The way how lives of the characters in the novel, were entangled to sea, was clearly and poetically made out in this story. Those who love sea and massive water bodies, this book is a must-read.

Precis:


1792
France-French Revolution-Guillotine-People take up the Government-kills the King of France-Kills all aristocratic people-some citizens supports and some accuses newly formed Republican Govt.

England-London-Still a  Monarchy-accuses France for killing nobles

The Scarlet Pimpernal-English way side flower-also a name chosen to hide the identity of the daring plotter-certainly an English man-helped by a band of 19 followers to obey-who saves the French nobles under the very noses of notorious French Government officials and brings them to England-Law of England supports and saves the Exiles-peace to them in here.

Scene 1 - Comtesse De Tournay (mother), Suzanne(daughter), Vicomte De Tournay(son), escapes the Paris gates under cover in a cart driven by the Scarlet pimpernal himself-rescued safely to Dover-the nearest coastal point in England from France across the English channel-obviously the Scarlet pimpernal does not reveal himself to any one other than the 19 followers.

Scene 2-Fisherman's rest-an inn on the coast of Dover-where the poor aristos were to be welcomed to England formally-by their saviours. Lord Antony arrives to Fisherman's rest-gives orders to prepare dinner for them and stays there-the trio arrives accompanied by Sir Andrew-Chemistry between Sir Andrew and Suzanne-Thanksgiving and wine-Two strangers at the inn plans an attack on Sir Andrew and Lord Antony-Obviously, members of the league.

Sir Percy Blakeney-a Dandy in the London society-very rich-dull with empty laughs-often sarcastically teased by the people for such dullness-brought to his English home-a young and fashionable actress from across the English channel-after wooing for one year-and got estranged from her immediately after 24 years of marriage-reason being her part in sending to guillotine, of Marquis De St Cyr, an aristo in France-unacceptable act to an Englishman raised in that social conditions-Though estranged-used to live together-Percy doing full gallantry to her-which is mocked by her.

Scene 3-Marguerite enters Fisherman's Rest with Sir Percy on the same evening-to send her brother Armand, back to France to attend his duty to the Republican Govt-Comtesse De Tournay treats her as an enemy-for the same Marquis guillotine-reproaches her on the face-Suzanne, Margeurite's classmate eases the tension in the coffee room of that old seaside inn-kisses Marguerite and follows her mother to their rooms.

Scene 4-Marguerite bids farewell to Armand-meets Chauvelin-newly appointed by France for spying and identifying Scarlet Pimpernal-asks Marguerite for help-Marguerite rejects-recognizes the hero's good deeds-sighs- and leaves to Richmond-her English home of her dull husband-At Fisherman's Rest- Antony and Andrew were left in silence for the night-attacked by Chauvelin-one of the strangers at the inn-seized some papers and found some secrets-Chauvelin satisfied-new hold on Marguerite to force her to do the work of spying-which she refused previously.

Scene 5- Opera House-Percy and Marguerite arrives-Chauvelin already there-found chance to speak to Marguerite and blackmail her to do the spying-with Armand's life as the prize-he being found as the memeber of the league of the Scarlet Pimpernal-as evidenced by the papers seized from the two young men back at Fisheman's Rest-Marguerite having no other option agrees-to save her dear brother.

Scene 6-Greenville's Ball-Marguerite steels the note from Sir Andrew's hand-which he was tyring to burn- and finally finds a fine note signed by the Scarlet Pimpernal- gives the clue to Chauvelin-that Scarlet Pimpernal will be at the supper room at one'o clock exactly at the ball house. Chauvelin promises Marguerite that the day Scarlet Pimpernal and Chauvelin are on France-Armand's note, which served as the evidence against him will be returned to Marguerite-Marguerite came to know by a messenger that there were no one in the supper room at the said time other than Chauvelin and the poor and dull Sir Percy-Marguerite again worried-on Chauvelin's failure to find the daring plotter-worries about Armand-returns to Richmond.

Scene 7-Richmond-Home of Sir Percy- midnite reaching-Garden-Moonlite-Thames-Marguerite tries to ask Sir Percy for help-in this crisis situation to save Armand-Sir Percy promises to save-Marguerite wants to thank him-he rejects-unbending Percy-Marguerite tries hard to win him back-but fails for the nite-goes to sleep with a weary heart-almost 5 in the morning then.

Scene 8-Sir Percy leaves a note in the early morning to his Lady that he is leaving for the North-Margerite wonders why so suddenly-meets him before he leaves-finds that he is going for saving Armand-Deep understanding glances-blooming Love once again-Marguerite happy once again for the confidence imbibed in her that she has chances to win him back-goes back to sleep after bidding farewell to her husband.

Scene 9-Marguerite wakes up-waits for Suzanne-her guest for the day-Scout comes and gives the note of Armand-which confirms Marguerite that the Scarlet Pimpernal is identified and he is on his way to France-Sir Percy's coachman answers Marguerite that he left Sir Percy at London Bridge-Marguerite suspicious-Why Percy leaves to London-Having this suspicion she enters Sir Percy's private room which she never ever entered-finds it intriguing-with maps of Paris and North coast of France-wonders why the hell - finds a gold ring with the symbol of the little star-shaped English way side flower inscribed on it.

Scene 10-Everything now got clear before Marguerite-Sir Percy is the Scarlet Pimpernal-He left to save Armand-Not knowing that his own beautiful wife betrayed him.

What happens to the Hero, Sir Percy and Armand, Marguerite's loving brother? What happens to our poor and beautiful Marguerite? What does Chauvelin do to Percy? Did the Daring Plotter succeed in his errand?

Read the book.
Listen to Audiobook


Thanks and happy reading.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

A world of Books and a company of words

It started when I was studying third standard in Thirukkovilur.

It was a friday evening, in the year 1993 (I dont remember the month).  I dropped my overweighing school bag in one corner and rushed to get rid of the uniform thing.   My mom was busy in the kitchen making coffee.  The aroma of the coffee always reminds me that everything is OK at home and it sort of rejunuvates the tiresome typical school boy in me.

It was a melancholy evening for me, though the following Saturday and Sunday are holidays. I thought "Oh! wat to do with my time in hand? I have no homework to do, no exams approaching, I have two days holdiay, Tomorrow I will go and play hide n seek in the temple backyard, Sunday, I will watch TV and play cricket....All set for two days...But what exactly should I do now? Ok, will try something new..."  and Suddenly my English Text book fell in my view... A week back my English teacher had read us a story from that book. I found it interesting at that time. I was keenly listening. Even as a child, I remember myself as a moody and reserved kind of a schoolboy. But inside I always looked for something interesting to wonder upon.

Soothingly warm steam from the coffee with its aroma relaxed me and I was just reading the story which my teacher read to our class. The story was about an adventurous boy who goes on a tour with his uncle and cousin, accidentally finds treasure box from a haunted house after escaping various dangers.
Exactly that was the time when my mind got haunted by haunted things.

From then on, whenever I felt boredom, loneliness, sad, happy, or whatever feeling which can occur to an 8 year old friendless moody kid, I started reading stories which are in some way either adventurous or ghostly. Every bit of spare time I got, I entered into this imaginary world built of books.  Sitting in one place in my room, I travelled to Arabia alongwith Sindbad, got shipwrecked with him and brought back treasures to home, Went to wonderland with Alice, Played the prince in Cinderella and Sleeping beauty, acted the invisible friend to Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn, and lots more... I also picked up my classmate girls as cinderella, snow white or Rebecca Thatcher... No they didnt know till date that I picked them up as my heroines in my imaginations.... All these I did, sitting in a corner.... I enjoyed that fantasy. These characters soothed my friendless soul. I started building a dreamworld with these characters.

And till today it continues... Very recently, I read The Scarlet Pimpernal.... And it continues to be my all time favourite...You know what... Sometimes I try to imitate Percy Blakeney but only when Im alone. Otherwise I dont want to lose my self. Sometimes I even thought, what if I became a split personality. But I believe nothing happened as yet. Now, I dont want to miss the theme. I enjoyed so much these books and the wor(l)ds in it that I became addicted to them.

Once when I was sitting with Sherlock Holmes in the Baker Street, London in the year 2009, my friend suddenly woke me up. "Oh! It was just a dream good God", I said to myself.

Whenever I find that there is no interesting books around, I started writing. Writing reduced my stress, brough me down and made corrections when I was too much flying high, and brought me up when I was drowning deep. When writing, I started to write for me and only me. The words proved to be best companions when lonely. Most of the times I dont know what to write, but still I write about the vagueness of my mind. After writing I feel like the burden shifted to the paper from my drooping shoulders. Days passed in the company of words and books. Paper became my dumb companion, Words became my wise friend and books my world!!!  This world of books is so virtual that the real pain also seemed to be virtual. What is more interesting is that the real world itself started seeming virtual.

Days rolled on like that and lately, I started picturizing myself as a charecter in this book world. I started observing myself very keenly, standing outside of me, like an author studying his prospective characters from real life. I started thinking my day-to-day events as pages in a Book. It felt like I was not living my life but just filling the pages in my lifebook. Allowing God to make a novel with me the protagonist. It passed thru various chapters say thriller, romantic love story and comedy.


I am loving it too. With the very thought that its just happening in a story written by the Greatest author, life moves on.... It will....

Monday, September 27, 2010

Besant Nagar Beach

It was already 6'O clock in the evening and the sky was pretty clear with Venus shining silverish.  It was not dark yet.Thats when we decided to start towards ECR and hang around in some lonely beach watching the full moon casting its light on the high tidal sea.... like paving a road built of light on the sea water leading to Burma or Indonesia...

ECR, my best hangout in Chennai, with all its scenic resorts, beach following us all the way, churches here and there, forests... Ill head on to this place whenever I have no one whom I can talk to. I would like to add to my loneliness, whenever I feel lonely (I dont know why). There will be all couples speeding thru from Mahabalipuram towards chennai which again makes me feel lonely. But still I love to go to this place in the evenings and to watch the people of different kinds, kids, lovers, middle-aged couples and play the silent observor.

This sunday evening, when we started, we thought of taking our friend who lives at Nungambakkam. He came there and we four assembled near American embassy. It was 6.30 then. It was when two peppy girls crossed us in a girly vehicle. We having two bikes decided to play some game and worked out a plan. As per the plan, we decided to take our two bikes one on each side of those girls and start conversing with each other.  As usual they did not pay any attention and as usual we didnt care.

From there we went to Lattice Bridge Road and thence to Adyar. Just when we entered Adyar, it struck me that we are passing thru an area which I always wanted to visit ever since I read a blog on the net. It was theosophical society and the eerie Blue cross road. I decided that we are visiting that place tonight. I wanted some adrealine in my streams since it was a long time having any adventure.

We spent some time in the beach. Karthi and Dass had fish fries at the famous shop in that beach. Beach was unusually crowded this Sunday.  I was reading the map on Karthi's newly bought X-peria X10, and fixed the destination as Blue cross road in the GPS. The blue line indicating the route which we should take was very small and I realised that we were very near to the place. Having come this distance, I didnt want to miss the thrill.  Once we started towards the destination, my friends started warning me. Coming to IVth main road, we were about to take right and there we found traffic cops targeting youths. It was 27th day of the month and we didnt want to take any risk. Took the left there and went thru some distance and took a roundabout road to the blue cross road.

The triangular mark indicated that we are very close and just then Karthi screamed, "Hey look at this". We were taken aback when we saw the small lane which started abrubtly from the main road. I had had great interests in spooky, eerie and haunted places since my childhood. Wanted to find some treasures or go thru some adventures just like Tom Sawyer of Mark Twain. But it never happened. Neither did I stop trying every single chance to encounter an adventure. There was this need for challenge in me right from birth, or even before.

That lane was dark from the very beginning. Standing at the entrance of the lane all we could see was a sharp right turn some 30 feet down. We didnt know what lies after the turn. It was 10 'O clock by then. We could not spot any humans in that 30 feet stretch. After hesitation for a fraction of second, we rode thru the lane. When we took right, we could see walls on either side, a narrow dark lane which promised mysteries. We slowly went pass the trees and hanging branches enjoying that eerie silence. I was wonderstruck how this road could be so lifeless amidst the busy city. I recorded almost everything I saw there in my Eye-cam, just to rewind back during the night back at my room, wrapping myself in cozy blankets. Exactly half-way thru the lane came a tiny temple, probably for some Goddess. Then we came out from the other side. Still I wanted to take another round but I know my friends would not agree. So I silently headed on towards Kodambakkam.

In all, it was an interesting evening hangout.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Tamizhkaar


தமிழக்கார்காலம்:
கார்காலம் என்றுமே அழகு தான். இந்த எளிய தொடக்கத்தை மழை விரும்பிகள் விரும்ப மாட்டார்கள் என்பதை நான் அறிந்திருக்கிறேன். ஆனாலும் மழையின் அழகு புலவர்களின் திறனையே வற்ற வைத்திருக்கிறது. நான் புலவன் அல்லவே.
தமிழ் நாட்டில் நிலங்களை ஐவகையாக பிரித்திருந்தனர். குறுஞ்சி முல்லை மருதம் நெய்தல் பாலை. இந்த ஐவகை நிலங்களும் பண்டை தமிழகத்தில் கார் காலத்தில் எப்படி இருந்திருக்கும் என்று ஒரு நாள் விட்டத்தை பார்த்தபடி எண்ணியிருந்தேன். பண்டை தமிழனின் மூளைக்குள் குடிபுகுந்து அவனுடைய கண் ஜன்னல்களில் வாயிலாக பண்டை தமிழகத்தை எட்டி பார்க்க வேண்டும் போலிருந்தது. அப்பொழுதும் வெளியில் மழை கொட்டிக்கொண்டிருந்தது. திருக்கோவிலூரில் உள்ள என் வீட்டின் பெட்ரூமில் அமர்ந்து கொண்டு, சூடான காபியை குடித்துகொண்டே என் கற்பனை குதிரையை காலச்சக்கரத்தில் பின்னோக்கி ஒடச்செய்தேன். மூளைக்குள்ளிருக்கும் எந்த பொருளுக்குமே விதிகள் இல்லையே. குதிரை பெரிதாக சிரமப்படவில்லை.

இடம் : கொல்லி மலைச்சாரல்
காலம்: கார்
நேரம்:  வைகறை

அப்பொழுதே விட்டிருந்த மழையின் தாக்கம் இன்னும் அந்த மலைகளில் காணப்பட்டன. மரங்களில் ஈரம் இன்னும் உலரவில்லை. பறந்து விரிந்த அந்த ஆலமரத்தின் இலைகள் இன்னும் மழை நீரை சொட்டவிட்டு கொண்டிருந்தன.

மழை காலங்களில் எல்லா உயிர்களும் தேடும் ஒரு பொருள், அடைக்கலம்.

மனிதன் தோன்றும் முன்னரே அந்த மலைகளில் ஆதிக்கம் செலுத்திய குரங்கினங்கள் மலைக்குகைகளில் தஞ்சம் புகுந்திருந்தன. குகைகளின் வெப்பமும் வெளியில் உள்ள மழையும் என்ன ஒரு இதமான கலவை அவைகளுக்கு. செழித்து வளர்ந்த மலைக்காடுகளில் உணவுக்கோர் பஞ்சமில்லை. மரங்களை சொந்தம் கொள்வோர் எவருமில்லை. இயற்கை அமைத்து தந்த அந்த வீடுகளில் தங்கள் வாழும் கடமையை நிவர்த்தி செய்ய தடைகளும் ஒன்றுமில்லை. எங்கும் இன்பமயம்.

மலைச்சாரலில் அந்த சிற்றூர் இன்னும் துயிலெழவில்லை. ஆதவன் புவியின் விளிம்பில் எட்டிப்பார்த்த பொழுது, மலையுலகம் சப்தமின்றி உறக்கத்தில் ஆழ்ந்திருந்தது. அந்த உறக்கம், புணர்ச்சி இன்பத்தின் நீட்டிப்பு என்பதை ஆதவன் உணர்ந்திருந்தான் போலும். வழக்கத்திற்கு மாறாக மெல்ல உதிக்கலாணன். கதிரவனின் வெளிச்சம் படவே மெல்ல தேனீக்களின் ரீங்காரம் தொடங்கியது. காலை மணி அடித்தாற்போல மற்ற உயிர்கள் துயிலெழுந்து சோம்பல் முறித்தன. ஈரவாசதால் ஒரு புத்துணர்வு படலத்தை உலகக்கன்னியின் மீது போர்த்தினான் வருணன்.. வெட்கி தலை குனிந்தாள் அவள்... அந்த வெட்கத்தால் சிவப்பேறிய கன்னங்களை போல் இருந்தது இந்த குறிஞ்சி நிலப்பகுதி.

உயிரோட்டத்தின் மூலமே நீரோட்டம் தான்... அம்மலை உச்சியில் விழுந்து, பாறைகளில் மோதி தெறித்து, பல ஜீவாராசிகளின் உயிரை எழுப்பி, அவைகளின் சிற்றுடலின் தாகம் தனித்தது புதுமழை..
என்றோ விழுந்து மண்ணை போர்த்து  உறங்கி கொண்டிருந்த விதைகள், ஒரு நாள் மழை நீரில் ஊறியதால் சட்டென்று முளைத்து வானை பார்த்து வெகுளியை சிரித்தன..

நீருக்கு நிறமில்லை என்பது உண்மை தான்... ஆனால் மழைக்கு நிறமுண்டு...பச்சை... உயிரின் நிறமும் அதுவாகத்தான் இருக்கவேண்டும்...மொத்தமாய் உலகத்தையே நீராட்டும் மழைத்தாய் பச்சை ஆடை போட்டு அழகு பார்க்கிறாள்..

எங்கெங்கோ விழுந்து மண்ணுடன் கலந்து தழுவி ஓரிடத்தில் கூடி செந்நிற சிற்றோடையாக அந்த சிற்றூருக்குள் வந்தது புது நீர்.. குறமகளிர், புதிய நீர் தோய்ந்த ஈர மண்ணில் கால் வைத்ததால், தங்களின் தண்டுவடத்தில் பாய்ந்த சீதள மின்சாரத்தில் மேலும் மெருகேறி அழகு மிளிர்ந்த முகங்களுடன் தங்கள் தலைவனை துயில் எழுப்பினர்.

புதிய உலகம் கிடைத்த களிப்பின் மிகுதியை தத்தம் தலைவியருடன் ஜீரணித்து கொண்டிருந்தனர் குரவர்கள்.. இன்பத்தின் உச்சி எப்படி இருக்கும் என்பதை அறியத்தொடங்கினர் அவர்கள்.. தேனும் மலைக்கனிகளும் பலா மரங்களும் காத்துக்கொண்டிருந்தன அவர்களுக்கு விருந்தளிக்க.. இன்பம் என்னும் உலக உணர்விற்கு அப்பால் இருக்கும் விஷயங்களை சிந்திக்க வேண்டிய சூழ்நிலையை அமைத்து கொடுத்த மழைக்கு நன்றி தெரிவித்துக்கொண்டனர் சிந்தனையாளர்கள்... ஊர் என்று ஒன்று இருந்தால் அங்கு சிந்தனைகளும் இருக்கத்தான் வேண்டும்... ஊர்க்கோடியில் கட்டியிருந்த முருகன் கோவிலில் "இன்பத்திற்கு பின்?" என்ற கேள்விக்கு விடை தேடி சென்றார்கள்...
( குறிஞ்சி நிலம் புணர்தலும் புணர்தல் நிமித்தமும் என்ற உரிப்பொருளுக்கே உகந்தது.. அதனால் இன்பத்தை தலையான உணர்வாக வைத்து கற்பனை செய்து பார்த்தேன் )
குறிஞ்சி முற்றும்.

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

My Weird Dream

I had this weird dream earlier this morning.

I was standing on a raised platform built of wood. My platform is the tallest. Below me were my friends unidentified. In front of the platform is a vacant place. The whole set up looked like a natural stadium of square shape and this platform on which I was standing, form one side of the boundary. I was chatting with my friends and suddenly I notice one damn damn huge snake. Black in color. I don't know whether its a cobra or something else. But it was so thick and long. Suddenly it came near to our platform. My friends feared it. I also feared it but since I was on the tallest platform I was damn confident (in my dream) that it wont bite me. The snake stood there and watched me closely sparing my friends. It did not bite them. Then there was a break in the dream. Suddenly I was walking on a roof, near to that wooden platform (or attached, I didn't know).

The snake followed me and was standing below at a distance. Even then I was not afraid since I was standing on a roof. The snake started spitting its venom through its mouth. At that time my close friend was with me. The snake spat the venom on us both like a shower. It didn't do anything to me ( the dream didn't tell me what happened to my friend). I turned my face and avoided the venom being spat on my face. There was too much venom all over my head and some went into my mouth as well. After that it occurred to me (in the dream) that it must be urine. I don't know how the snake can spit urine thru the mouth. What does this dream signify?

Can anyone interpret? I'm just writing this here to keep track of my dream and to share it with you ppl....

(deeply into analysis of human mind)

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Being spiritual sometimes

See.. When u start putting a 'Wh' question for every other thing you do in your life, starting right from breathing, and you initiate the process of finding answers to those questions, provided the questions does not stop at a point where the word happiness is the answer, and the answers being supported by layman's logic, you will eventually find yourself in the path of self-realisation...

Isnt it true??


15 crazy effets of XX chromosomes and Oestrogens

 1.  You want to know what is Chaos... keenly observe the thought process of a woman.
 2.  The peak of indesiciveness resulting out of love on fellow beingS (S caps).
 3.  Trivial is BIG. Big is BBBBIIIIIGGGGGG and BBBBIIIIGGGG is.... Sorry Google's blogger is a free service and doesnt support that much memory....
 4.  Sometimes they are very artificial... Sometimes they are very very natural...Interesting part is Sometimes they are artificially natural and naturally artificial....What is even more interesting is you can't find the difference in any of these situations...
 5.  Make a woman dumb is the best way to kill her very quickly.
 6.  Start linking the present events and project them a little into future.... Men can do it in 10 ways... Women will do it in 10 power 10 ways.
 7.  Blood is oozing out of his heart and he is about to die in another five mins.  He calls for his wife, who just returned, for a last meeting before the poor guy leaves to heaven (of course!!)... And the most feministic reply which came out of her sweet and delicate mouth is: " Can't you see I'm tired? You don't understand my feelings. You are very demanding and you don't love me anymore, you are very selfish".... The poor guy closes his eyelids for one final time thinking, "Yes lady, it sounds more logical that I should understand you when Im dying."
 8.  The Spelling of L-O-G-I-C in a female dictionary is F-E-E-L-I-N-G
 9.  In no other place in this world is Amoeba and Dinosaur more profusely connected than in a female brain.
10. Who is important? Your guy or the micro-organism of your house's drainage system?
Interesting female reply: Ah... My guy is a superman, He loves me sooo much, He takes care of me and our kids, wins bread for us, protects us.... What does this little useless micro-organism mean to me? (Thinks for a while and then) Oh... No... Poor thing... I scolded it... Sorry... Did I say my guy is a superman??? I now revisit my answer and decide the opposite....The micro-organism is very poor.. Its hungry all the time... It needs care... It needs love... Who is there for it? Ah... Im the universal mother... So... I think the micro-organism is all the more important at this second than anyone.