Back in eight grade, this particular word “Catastrophe” seemed to be the most dreadfully long word. We had a lesson on Black Friday articulating the day’s event of the twin-building disaster that took place on September 11. It was a story of what a human mind is capable of doing, in the most precarious manners.
We were students horrified with gruesome happenings of the world. Keeping aside all the little discoveries , we were more horrified to hear a surprise test on the glossary of the particular chapter. We scavenged for the books hidden in the warm sockets of our bags, briskly turned over the pages and started to by-heart the meanings.
But then our teacher gave out a twist in the surprise test. She announced that she would give the meaning a word and we had answer the question word . Well it wasn’t logical (at least for us, back then) for we were good with the meanings and the words seemed too long and complex to have a proper pronunciation.
We were still memorizing the contents, when our teacher with a sleek stick tapped on the desk and called upon my name.
“Yes you, tell me the word for ‘An event causing great and usually sudden damage or suffering’.” and that was indeed a sudden disaster to me. I was to be asked according to my registration number and I ended being called first instead of twelve. Like a lion sure of it’s prey, she rounded me tapping the slender stick on my table making me fear for that beating( The stick was only for keeping the class calm, now I think about it, no , my school actually never beat people)
I took breath and blurted “Catastrophey” ; yes the pronunciation was my fault and what I call as my luck, is the fact that, among-st those fifteen glossary words, I knew only the one I was questioned for. It might be a stroke of luck but it got etched in my brain so effortlessly that it started a new craving for more complex words in me, of-course with almost proper pronunciation, I started learning them, loving English a bit more than ever.
Hence what might pass on as a catastrophe might many a times come handy to reach our new horizons, to face new challenges and to have a broader perspective. Albeit it was just a childhood snippet but it had an immense impact on the way I look to things and the way I embrace them into my life
Now that I think about all those catastrophes around the world, some intended, some others , a work of nature. They all get destroyed at one point of the time phase. But what matters is how high they stood, be it the humans or the non-living structures, in their worth of staying on this earth. If nature works can’t be denied or prevented with the limited knowledge of technology and over-use of the same technology to the destruction, then I might well say , we should be more prepared for the world’s sudden disasters to fall upon us.
I hope we could minimize the damage, be more human and understand the environment we are in to have a better future, a better living and to leave behind a healthy world for the generations to come.