July 20, 2005

tiki (no, not another food post)

Read two books this weekend. One was a classic tale of grit, search for new horizons and had plenty of swashbuckling excitement. the other was a rather dull chronicle.

the second one, as you rightly guessed (what discerning readers i have!) was the new harry potter. shant bother any more about it other than to say that i didn't plonk down rs 800 or whatever, and am glad. glad, dyouhearme?

the first one was "the kon tiki voyage" by thor heyerdahl. those of you who had the gulmohar reader in the 3rd std will remember a small extract from it. the language is simple (hence inclusion in the syllabus for 8 year olds), though thor keeps referring to waves as "seas".. as in "a large sea hit the raft". very endearing.

its about thor's theory that the polynesians got to the islands in the pacific from peru, on rafts. since everyone debunked it, thor got together 4 more norwegians, 1 swede and balsa from equador, put together a raft and sailed off into the pacific. lots of wry humour and shark catching techniques -- they were in a raft, so rather close to the surface of the sea, as well as whales and flying fish.

its a great read, makes you want to get onto a raft with bearded norwegians and solve your own anthropological puzzle.


D said...

i did read gulmohar too till std 7 :)
the 1st english novel i ever read was oliver twist which i think was in the gulmohar for std 2. we had black beauty in std 1. i loved gulmohar.

udwi said...

Remember reading one of those Readers' Digest "book section" things about the Kon-Tiki voyage. From the same book?

I didn't know they had an Ecuadorian named Balsa with them, thought the entire crew was Scandinavian. We live and we learn.

Didn't Thor (Thor! I ask you, could he have been anything but a swashbuckling explorer with a name like that? Thor Heyerdahl, Chartered Accountant?) later try to prove that the Egyptians pollinated the New World or vice versa and try to sail in a paper boat from Alexandria to Tenochtitlan or wherever?

Orcaella brevirostris said...

d, i really liked gulmohar, but in the 5th they abruptly switched us to "onward english" which was a completely different format. i'm still recovering from the shock.

dwig, its even worse than you think! they took the equadorian named balsa (ENB) tied with ropes. they sat on ENB for 97 days! but ENB didnt crack under their weight or the constant battering of the sea.
thor made several more expeditions, tying up various other natives.. i am writing a monograph on the subject

Hirak said...

Sounds like one hell of an adventure! I am reminded of another sea-tale by Marquez (based on a true story)- The Diary of a Shipwrecked Soldier.
I read Collapse by Jared Diamond (great book) a few weeks ago, and the idea that Polynesia was settled by the South Americans is not correct. DNA analysis has shown that it more likely that Asians colonized the Pacific and not South American(Incas).

neo said...

Gulmohar did me lot of good service by introducing various forms of English literature. I appreciate it much more now than could have done at that age.

You struck a nostalgic chord for me. :)

Muhammed said...

hi ! i 2've read Gulmohar till Std 7th ! I loved the Story " The Cop And The Anthemn " in Std 7th . Can u plz tell me how i be anle 2 read/download Gulmohar Reader Text Books frm the Internet . Mail me 2 mnuman.stars@yahoo.com .