Languages – Funny things they are…

I have started to learn Welsh (as part of work, we get to do a course for free) and I just finished learning numbers. I cannot help but see the similarities between the pronunciation of those numbers in Welsh and Hindi (even though Hindi ain’t my native language). Here is a table where I list the way the numbers are pronounced in Welsh and Hindi. In Welsh, the vowels are different from English and the actual pronunciation is in the brackets.

NumberWelsh (pronounced as)Hindi
1un (een)ek
2dau (dai)dho
3tri theen
5pump (pim)paanch
6chewch (quekh)che
8wyth (aith)aat
9naw (nau)nau

Not much different are they? Wonder how they got to be this similar in pronunciation of the numbers. Will I find any more similarities the more I learn the language?

Remembering the Unidentified

In Cobh (County of Cork, Ireland), there was a board which listed the names of those people who were in RMS Lusitania ship and who were washed ashore (both Victims and Survivors) on 7th May 1915. Most of them were dedicated to a specific person. But I found this one where it paid tribute to those unidentified number of passengers who died during the ship attack. I thought it was a very nice gesture and was glad to have found that. Those who were unidentified should be remembered too.

Memory Quirks

No wonder humans and the functions of a human brain is so complex that we can never figure out fully about how they work. Especially the memory part. It is not like a hard disk in your computers where its a WYSIWYG (what you store is what you get). Sometimes I wish I had a Pensieve (like in Harry Potter series). Makes it a lot easier. The other day I was thinking about how I can recall all the car’s license plate numbers of my friends (because we generally car pool when we are out and about during the weekends) but I can’t remember any of their phone numbers. If I lost my phone, I would struggle a lot. After so many years, I have come to remember my sibling’s and parent’s number and for any emergency all I can do is blurt out a number of my family, who is not in the same city. Similarly, I am pathetic with birthdays. Again because they are family, I remember their’s. Otherwise, I don’t remember any of my friend’s date of birth. Since they are awesome, they remind me a day earlier and I add it to my calendar 😉 Sometime back I had been to a bank to draw a draft. There is a new rule that a draft can be issued only for an account holder, of which I wasn’t aware of, but luckily I did have an account with that bank. The only problem being I hadn’t used it in a long time and it got deactivated. When they asked me for the account number to activate the same, I wasn’t able to recall it. But when I took a pen and a paper, I was able to write it down correctly. That was strange. How can I write something down when I can’t actually recall it to tell it out loudly ? Its been more than a year since I used that account. Memories and its tryst with numbers, I always end up dumbfounded with these.