Skip to main content


"Yuji San! Are you happy?" asks Frank. (San is the Japanese equivalent of Mr.). Yuji looks at the space in front in a meditative mood (as if he is trying to work out whether he is happy or not). Then he draws a typical big Japanese smile on his face that reflects extreme happiness and shake head heavily, "Yes, Yes"(the second yes to confirm the first yes). This would set all five of us into a roaring laughter.

This was the second time I met with Frank. He is 67 and a manager of a European auto giant. He works till 2 O'clock in the night (!) and gets up at 6 in the morning. In spite of that I have never seen him dozing off on a ride as long as four hours. I also have never heard him raising his voice to express dissatisfaction. His silence was enough to set all of us into motion to correct what ever mistake made or occurred. However his voice shakes everything around when he is happy, when he laughs.

Yuji is an engineer. As it happens with almost all Japanese, Yuji's English is not so appreciable. But he is simple and it is not difficult reading his face for his remarks or feelings. Almost every time you ask Yuji a question, he would first work out the answer in his mind, construct the equivalent English sentences and shoot. The whole process takes him a long time. But that was not at all a problem for the team members. They can have a look at the changing curves on his face and read what was going inside. No one had to wait for him to speak out. Even I started reading him from the second half of the day.

After spending a week with this British-Japanese combo, I am convinced having a common language is not a necessary and sufficient condition for communication. What is important is willingness to share, willingness to express and willingness to see things from the perspective of the other one.

Friday was the last day of our journey. "Yuji san, so you are happy that you are going back to home?" As usual, Yuji took his time to think whether he is happy or not and shaking hands with me, he projected an unusually longer sentence. "Yes, yes...I am happy going back to home...but I liked India and...and that you accompanied us in the trip...thank you very much...I hope we will meet again."

Yes Yuji san, I also enjoyed your company and the simplicity with which you have accepted the world around. Sayonara!


starry nights said…
sometimes no language is necessary .Just a warm smile, a handshake speaks for itself. Nice post.
Mindinside said…
He enjoyed your company.

This is realy a fantastic pic ... the awsome nature

By the way, what's the meaning of Aklanta in ur language?
adi said…
when heart speaks, the words fall silent

aklant n not aklanta if i'm correct means 'one who doesn't gets disturbed easily' is it right? one without troubles...

dwaipayan said…
a simple yet beautiful post. i read about the same feeling in alchemist by paulo cohelo
totaramkiaaatma said…
Aklanta San u have bn having a gud time!!
jac said…
A lovely post.
fritz said…
c-o-o-l blog post...l-o-v-e-l-y pic! ;;)
Ghetufool said…
your blog is very attractive. good taste. good writing too.
Ghetufool said…
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said…
Hmm...common language, did you say? Well, it should not be a problem if someone visits you for a day or two. But on a regular basis...I beg to differ. Ask me about my travails of living in Chennai! :(

Popular posts from this blog

Firefly Syndrome!

Friday March 24, 2006

Reminder alert of the cell phone dragged me out of sleep at 5:30 in the morning. The screen flashed FMC...FMC...FMC

"Friday Morning Class? Oh shit!"

(It's one of the hundreds of things; I am trying to absorb either into my daily or weekly schedule thanks to my new profile in a KPO.)

That means I will have to reach office 45 minutes earlier than a normal day, sit patiently in the conference room, either listening to the lifeless preaching of an unmotivated 'motivation expert' (something I hate from the bottom of my heart) or struggle to make sense out of a presentation by a Chartered Accountant or an MBA on some topic of their interest. I am the odd man out in such classes. But attending them is mandatory.

While concepts of management always tickle my senses, I feel awkward listening to CAs. The Topics they discuss hardly make any sense to me. So I have find out various ways of utilizing the time I feel I am wasting. When there's no other opti…

Smiles About(III)

There was a small stream flowing just outside of the school boundary, running parallel to it. There was a small bridge over the stream but we hardly cared for it as the stream was too small. But a year ago, last time a year ago when I had to cross it there was no way to avoid the huge concrete bride over it. The stream has grown into a river...

It was a Friday and as usual there was excitement as there will be an hour long lunch break which we are going to invest in the game of cricket. That also mean's there are chances that the lunch will be sacrificed in the name of cricket.

It was ensured that the bats and wickets were in perfect conditions. The moment the bell announces the lunch break, Nupur will rush to the nearby market to buy a ball. And everything happened as per the plan.

The problem came when Ratul choose to hammer hard a full-toss ball with a full flung bat resulting into an 'over boundary'. The ground was not 'that big'. As per the rules of the game (am…

Rays of hope...

These days,
I can hear my heart saying
its time
you confront your life,
its time
you nourish dreams
fill some colours
to the grey grey world
And I followed it, added a colour, a crimson colour full of life. I can feel the spaces inside my heart getting filled with sight and smell of rose and sounds of echoing laughter. I can feel it growing fonder, quieter, warmer then ever. I am struggling for words to paint my heart. There are thousands of them.As it usually happens, in these moments I find it difficult to choose the best of them...all of them dearer, all of them nearer...I am sitting quite till they grow strong enough to break the barricade erected long time back. I am waiting for the day they unfold their wings again, to touch the vast blueness above.
These days, I can hear my heart saying the day is not far...