Saturday, November 26, 2005

so much interest in learning spanish...

There are 300 students taking the spanish course in the Centre for Foreign languages, Hyderabad. On the day of issue of application, people queued up from 4 am..
The Inst could not take all applicants, since they dont hv enough professors.
Spanish is the most popular language and in great demand.
It is not just the prospects of career ( of course many of those learning are from IT and other bz )motivating this.
There is an upbeat latino spirit in the whole campus of CIEFL.
Even the waiters in the mess prefer to say " Hola " to greet people.
Credit for this goes to prof Sonya Gupta, the dynamic Chairperson of the spanish language dept.
felicitaciones Sonya !

I was there to give a talk on hispanic culture on 23 nov at the conference organised by Institute Hispania, which is doing a commendable professional job in teaching in three cities and has plans to expand.
I was amazed by the enthusiasm and spirit of the students and teachers of spanish there.
I was told there are lots of students in pune also.
madras university has started a course?
BHU runs spanish courses.

The time has come for the policy makers, professors and enterpreneurs in language bz to think big and plan for the growing demand.

last ten days were like a carnaval for me... i was flying high..over pao de azucar, canaima and la romana ...
There were bz delegations from Brasil, mexico, venezuela, panama and dominican republic.
These delegates made me feel nostalgic and I was " at home"
The response from indian bzmen to these delegations were positive and encouraging.

Monday, November 21, 2005

su excellencia

This is the title of the Mexican film i saw yesterday.
It means "your excellency" in spanish.
It is a hilarious comedy.
i was laughing and laughing...
It has unmasked the diplomats, who move high in the clouds, elevated by the high-sounding " your excellency" and all the trappings of old world protocol.
Some of what the movie portrays is true.Diplomacy has its share of talents as well as crackpots.
-like the visa officer, who works from 1030 am to 1045 am..not far from truth in some embassies....
-He sends back visa applicants asking them to bring all kinds of documents, some of them non-sensical and absurd. Height of this is when the visa officer asks for a gurantee so that if the visiter dies, someone takes responsibility to take the body back...
- In the middle of the dinner, ambassador receives a telegram saying that military has taken over the govt and making his military attache as the ambassador. The shaken excellency moves from the head table and asks his attache to sit in his place.
so many such funny things.. some of them close to reality

I recommend this to diplomatic colleagues and those who interact with them.
The DVD of the movie has English subtitles.

Remember.. the other movie recommendation on the same subject
" El Embajador de la India" - the ambassador of India
A colombian movie, based on a real story of a colombian imposter, masquerading as Indian ambassador and is caught...equally hilarious

Thursday, November 17, 2005

Fortnight of Latin American Fiesta

Second fortnight of November is the Quincena of Latin America
I am thrilled, so many came from latin America
- A 65 member business delegation of Brasil and the governor of Sao Paulo
- A Mexican business delegation
- The Vice President of Panama accompanied by an offical and a bz delegation
- A venezuelan business delegation and another delegation to negotiate DTAA
- IT and Investment minister of Dominican Republic and a bz delegation
- Brasilian trade lawyer Durval Noronha
- Chilean naval chief

Understandably the presence of so many latin americans
made me feel nostalgic
at the same time..I felt at home ...

And there was this Latin american voice which keeps calling me

Amor da minha vida
Luz de meu querer
Vem fica comigo
Sou quem sou
So por voce

This poem in portuguese(i recited in the meeting with Brasilians)

Love of my life
Light of my love
Come back to me
I am what I am
Just for you