The serendipitous intersection of language

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Something that has never ceased to fascinate me is the art of translation. Being bilingual and growing up in dual cultures, I realize quite obviously that there are phrases that cannot be translated accurately. These lost in translation treasures are uniquely defined by the connotation that comes with the phrase. There are histories, feelings, memories, cultures associated with the phrase that cannot be carried over to a corresponding phrase in another language with the same denotation. Specific words make you feel specific things. Even the sounds that make up a word mean things to us. There are combinations of letters that make us feel a cacophonous sound; likewise there are soothing words. Continue reading

Red Line Blues

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The Metro pumps hundreds, thousands of people…of humans through the the veins of Dubai. Most people take the Red Line, the central artery. As its doors open, people gush out, and others push in. Inside the vessel is tremendous silence and tremendous noise, in the same instance. Many passengers sit with hazed eyes, staring emptily out the windows. Others shout frustratingly into their mobile phones. All the silence and noise is wrapped together with the rhythmic drone of the train. Among all the people, you’ve never felt so near but distant to others in the same moment. Your proximity is incredibly close, and you are sharing the same journey for a short span of time. But you also realize that each person is spinning in their own universe, a billion miles from you. It is this vessel that carries me into and out of Dubai each time I visit.