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Nilgiri: Among the Clouds

“I'm going to Nilgiri this week.”
“Where?”
“I'm not sure. It's this mountain place.”

That's how most of my conversations about last month's venture to Nilgiri went.

Nilgiri is, indeed, a mountain place. It's the highest mountain place (or hill resort) in Bangladesh. Hidden in the midst of densely forested hills and winding, dizzy roads, shrouded in clouds, lies Nilgiri. If you like your daily dose of TV, if you need the fan during the day or at 12 at night or if you aren't good at dealing with spiders, insects and the occasional whatcha-ma-callit (tiny slithering snake-worms), it's no use. There isn't much to watch, there aren't any cultural programmes, any hands-on activities or much of a menu. But one man put it quite nicely when he wrote in the guestbook: “We have enough time and dish at home to watch TV.”

After all, why would you need TV when you're the closest to Heaven that you're going to get in Bangladesh (and more practically, how can you expect HBO in a place with sketchy cell network)? Nilgiri truly is Heaven on Earth in Bangladesh. In the morning, the sunrise sets fire to the clouds trapped in the valley below you and it's a remarkable sight. If you wake up at the right moment, you can see the effect of the first rays of the sun and go right back to sleep too! And it feels awesome to sleep in; no matter how late you wake up, it's still slightly chilly and the sunlight has a soft shine to it.

Due to the presence of avid and enthusiastic travelling companions - cough*Dad*cough* - on our second day we were crammed into the car and bounced along to the unfinished bridge leading to Thanchi market. Thanchi is the obscure town quite a few kilometres from Nilgiri where we met the locals of the Bandarban area. Nilgiri is military-run, so one doesn't come across many tribal folk there (although pictures of them are predominant in the mess hall). The tribal women wear curious bell-shaped earrings. Their clothing isn't particularly distinctive, but their lifestyle definitely is. A man was selling a young Maynah bird for Tk. 2000 (It currently resides in my living room). Another woman let us cuddle and pet her baby monkey which she had bought the previous week for Tk. 1000 (Yes, I wanted to buy the baby monkey instead). The community was diverse and rather interesting. And the hanging bridge linking the market and the village was completely unexpected.

Picturesque and extraordinary, Nilgiri should definitely be on everyone's To-go list. After all, where else in Bangladesh can you stand inside a cloud while it rains?

By Sifana Sohail


The Kid's Guide to Teaching the Parent (Basic) Internet

Introduction
This manual is to be used as a Parent-Kid Guide to make co-operation and Internet learning easier. Child Guidance advised.
There are three main parts to internet:
1. Google (Web Search)
2. Email
3. Facebook

Google (Web Search)
You can use this to find anything on the internet. The bar in the middle of the page is used to type in the search query, i.e. the name of the thing you are looking for. You then hit the Enter button on your keyboard. Sometimes Google Search will act smart and search for something other than, but similar to, what you have typed in. If you are SURE that what you have typed in is correctly spelled and is exactly what you are searching for, click the italicised, underlined search words that correspond to your typed in phrase/word.

If you are looking for pictures, videos, news clips etc, there are small underlined hyperlinks at the very top of the page. You may click these to choose Images, Videos, Shopping results etc.

Email
First choose an email service provider, e.g. Hotmail, Gmail. Allow your child to set up your email account with occasional input from you. After your child finalises the procedure, (s)he will show you how to sign in. You may save the email address and password on the computer, especially if it is the HPC (Home Public Computer) for security reasons. They should both be memorised however, along with the answer to the Security Question, for future reference. After signing in, the child will show you how to check your email. Each email service provider has a different interface but some buttons are common.

Inbox: The place where all of your received emails are stored. Any new emails can be found here.

Outbox/Sent Mail: The place where all of the emails that you have sent out are stored.

Spam/Junk: The emails that your internet has decided are unimportant, irrelevant or unwanted are stored here. Do not go here. If required, ask child to investigate but DO NOT CLICK BUTTON.

Trash: Garbage (Aborjona).

Compose mail/New Message: Opens up a new email that you can send to anyone. Email address required. Your child will show you how to compose an email and attach files.

After checking an email if you wish to retort, click the reply button. This will open a window similar to the Compose Mail window.

Facebook
Allow your (not-at-all-reluctant) child to create a Facebook account for you.

Note: Facebook is highly public. Any personal issues are HIGHLY discouraged from being aired here.

Information: Contains your personal details, work details, contact details etc. NEVER put your phone number on Facebook. Any pages you 'Like', such as 'Hershey', will automatically appear on your Info.

Friends: You can 'Friend' other people by searching for them and clicking 'Send Friend Request' or accepting friend requests. New Requests will pop up on the notifications bar.

Note to Child: insert mild safety lecture on Friends and dangers of Facebook

Wall (Profile button): Contains posts (what you and other people have written to allow 'Friends' to see and comment) and your actions (what you've been doing). You can also write on your 'Friends' walls.

Notifications: Can be viewed from Notification bar or in a separate page. Gives you updates from any people you have been stalking.

Newsfeed (Home Button): Shows what your friends have been up to.

The detailed manual, 'The Complete Kid's Guide to Teaching the Parent (Basic) Internet' can be ordered at 1-800-WTF-WEL-COM-2FB. Order now and get a free copy of 'Understanding C|-|4$h4 L4nG()4Z3 or L33t $p33k'.


Earthquake LiveFeed

This Monday the Earth moved. Literally. While many were blissfully unaware, others were running for cover. Our loyal readers were busy on our Facebook page making sure they had the last say. Luckily, we all live to post another day.

Jennifer Saha:
I am safe! Effects of Face on what to do during an earthquake:
1. Run towards your PC and switch it on.
2. Open Facebook and put a status as "OMG earthquake" or somethng similar.
3. Wait for a few likes and comments
4. Click on Start menu
5. Shut down PC safely
6. Now run with the others to save your life!

Muhammad Mustafa Monowar:
Safe for now... but it's not a good sign having a 6.8 here.

Rafi Sikder:
There was an Earthquake? Wait, where?

Mustafiz Rahman:
Beware people who carry Nokia 1100 in their pockets. You risk misinterpreting Earthquake as your phone vibrating. I should know.

Mahir Khan:
Here's what happened to me: I came back from College and started studying and saw the pages shaking. I slapped myself and started reading again and again the pages shook. Moments later, mom told me it was an earthquake.

For more interaction, log on to www.facebook.com/DSRisingStars

   

 

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