A Journey to Jerusalem by Parumala Thirumeni
Here we are in touch with the left hand of a writer-traveller.
While travelling in a ship, he lis attempting to structure this journey
in the framework of an Old Testament account which he recollects.
What is significant about a ship journey to be written after all? One can see nothing on the sea. Such journey is least interesting as well. But you never for once feel bored or disinterested as you are through Thirumeni’s descriptions.
experiences during this sea voyage are as interesting as like that while
you stay at home. The crew had provided them with two ovens for cooking.
They prepared rice-meal once a day and managed with tea, bread and
biscuits during the rest of the day.
Thus whicle they were happy and had no problem with their food, the ship was tosses by waves one day and water began to rush into the ship. The sea voyage comes to an end., as he describes each incident at every stage of the journey. Thus he transforms the day and uninteresting sea voyage to pretty interesting description. This obviously is the ability of the writer in the traveller.
THE JOY OF
The author also notes that as the ship anchored at the mouth of
the Suez Canal, a few houses in the city could be seen, with the help of
the big electric lamp that was brought near the ship from the shore. The
Suez Canal is described in lits minute details:
The canal is from north to south land our journey is to the
north. The canal may be 80 meters wide and 90 kms. long. Though the
canal was so wide, la ship would remain stationary, if another one were
to pass ;by. Both sides of the canal are vast sandy deserts. At a
distance in the west there are a few villages and trees. Nearby to this
region a few hamlets and stations could be seen. At different places
along the Suez, buoys and light houses have been placed.
Travelling by rail one may enjoy other wayside scenes and leave them at that. However, Parumala Thiruimeni transforms those scenes into beautiful descriptions. He shows a rare dexterity in delineating wordy pictures out of natural scenery. Here is a specimen: he lis describing the wayside scenes on the way to Jerusalem by rail:
The number of mountains
is increasing as we approach the holy city. They are mostly steep, full
of whiter sandstone land some look like the wilderness. Along the
valleys of some of these mountains, there were olive
trees and vineyards. It was not the fruit-bearing times of trees,
when we were there; so we could not enjoy the full beauty of the
vineyards. Some of the trees had sprouted, some had flowers, and a few
others had fruits still not ripe. Olive was the most common tree. But
they do not grow like the bigger trees in Kerala.
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