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     Volume 4 Issue 22 | November 26, 2004 |

   Cover Story
   News Notes
   In Retrospect
   Photo Feature
   Time Out
   Food for Thought
   Book Review
   Dhaka Diary
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Dhaka Diary

A few nights ago, I was going home with my mother at around 8 pm. We were stuck in a traffic jam in front of Mouchak market. Right in front of us, a taxi and a rickshaw were passing by the same route. There was a man and a burkha clad woman in the rickshaw. Suddenly, the taxi brushed against the tire of the rickshaw, which was a good enough reason to start screaming at each other. To make matters worse, the male passenger got down from the rickshaw and began to scream hard and began to swear at the taxi driver, to which the taxi driver also responded with equal amount of venom. Once the man realised that there was nothing else to scream about, he turned around to board his rickshaw. Interestingly, while they were busy screaming, another rickshaw with a burkha clad woman on, stopped by to have a peek at the chaotic scene in the middle of the road. As it was dark, the screaming-man had not noticed it and boarded the wrong rickshaw. Since we were just beside the taxi, my mother noticed all the happenings and was trying hard to smother a big smile. She shouted to the man, 'Hey! Your rickshaw is over there. This is another one.' The man realised his mistake and went back silently to his rickshaw. However, after that, we burst out laughing, thinking that probably he would have gone off with the other woman, if no one had been there to point out his mistake.

Jafrin Jahed Jiti Viqarunnisa Noon College

United we jam!
Not excited for yet another venture for Eid shopping with my mother, I was practically dragged and emotionally blackmailed into accompanying her to probably choose another sari for Aunty so-and-so or toys for the little ones scattered in the family. To my horror and dismay, we were stuck right in front of Mouchak Market and had to linger on amidst the crowd filled with all kinds of honking vehicles and screaming people. All of a sudden, Mahmuduzzaman Babu's Aami Banglay Gan Gai blared out from the speakers of the market. The voice and the song were both so soothing that I found myself calming down and singing along. Fascinatingly, the honking ceased slowly and the screaming subsided. The people around me were singing along as well. I looked around me and found almost everyone mouthing the words of the song and humming the tune. For some peculiar reason, I felt the very unfamiliar feeling of being united with everyone around me. The song, which speaks about our language and culture, seemed to be reflecting within every human being stuck in the traffic jam that night. For once, I think everybody that evening wanted to be stuck in the jam for a while longer!

Nasheeth Kaiser Banani, Dhaka

Eid entertainment
Who said there are no 'cool' ways of entertaining yourself in Dhaka? This Eid, many who hadn't left the city, found different ways of amusing themselves by taking advantage of the empty streets. Young boys brought out their cars and got rid of the silencers to make as much noise as possible to have their presence known. They had the thrill of speeding at 120 km per hour, and to their delight, had no one to stop them. Bikes came into the scene 'vrooming' their ways on the flyover. The result was bloody, obviously, with youngsters (who did the 'smart' thing by not wearing helmets) ending up in the hospitals with cracked skulls. You could say that these races were a 'smash-hit'.

Sabrina Ahmad Gulshan, Dhaka


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