A couple of posts

Hello Bloggers,

I am sharing a couple of blogs from my friends today.

The first post I am sharing is Hear him! by Barsha Sedhain. This is one of her earliest posts on her blog that talks about how men keep suppressing their feelings in order to show that they are strong.

Another post is from Manoj Regmi. This post, My Love for Birds, shows his passion in photography.

Please do check out other contents on their site as well.

Have a great day!

Sandeept

Should we allow Amazon Product reviews?

Hi Anand @dancinglightofgrace,

Yesterday, you kept me in loop with regards to Rehan’s inquiry about posting Amazon product reviews on Blogger’s World.

I checked the guidelines and rules. There is nothing that says we should not allow product reviews. However, my concern is some visitors might think of product reviews as commercial or even spammy content.

Hi Rehan @lifeenhancer4all,

Could you please share the link to your product reviews on this thread? It would be easier to look into your content from here and make a decision based on it.

Dear authors, readers and visitors, it would be helpful if you told us how it feels to see product reviews on this forum.

Thank you.

Sandeept

#admin-updates

Amy Henrie Gillet’s Review of Tolstoy’s ‘What Men Live By’

Leo Tolstoy’s ‘What Men Live By’ is one of the most beautiful stories I read when I was young. I suddenly remembered it this evening and found a beautiful review of the story. Please check it out.

https://amyhenriegillett.wordpress.com/2010/08/11/book-review-what-men-live-by-by-leo-tolstoy/

Is this development?

Yesterday (February 2) was World Wetlands Day. Wetlands are natural ecosystem involving fresh water, brackish or salt water. Wetlands, however do not contain ocean by definition.

Yesterday, I watched a video on Twitter that explained how concretizing recharge zone affects groundwater storage. Recharge zone is the area containing gravelly and/or coarse sand that conducts water readily. In mountainous valley like Kathmandu, the surrounding mountains make the recharge zone.

Kathmandu Valley (from Google Earth)

The central portion of the Kathmandu Valley consists of about 200 m thick layer of clayey soil. Water does not readily infiltrate in this zone. Roads and concrete structures in this part have increased urban flooding. In ancient and medieval times several ponds had been constructed to prevent urban flooding. But most of these have been depleted, encroached or altered.

The recharge zone has also gone through a huge change. “Development” is rampant. People are shifting towards the hills because of the increased population and advanced technology.

Dozers have completely altered the hill and its ecosystem. This is from the northern part of Kathmandu Valley
The frequency of landslides is increasing in the area but people are rapidly shifting here. This is alarming.

These areas have not been completely concretized. But with more people reaching the area, concretization will be inevitable. The Shivapuri-Nagarjun National Park aims to preserve the watershed in the northern part but it might not be enough.

The scarcity of drinking water in the Kathmandu Valley is something politicians have always cashed upon. The scarcity is going to create even more problems.

Similarly, disasters are going to be more frequent. Landslides and urban flooding will create more troubles. Our “development” activities have not considered these problems yet. Development could actually be destruction.

Problem is, those who talk about these geological and ecological problems and suggest sustainable development plans are often labelled as being against development. Unless common people understand the science behind mountains, groundwater, and urban planning, it is impossible to attain sustainable development.

#science-and-society #urbanization #water #wetlands-day

A movie review

Kaguya-hime no Monogatari (The Tale of Princess Kaguya) is a 2013 animated movie produced by Studio Ghibli and directed by Takahata Isao. Based on one of the oldest and most popular folktale, “The Tale of the Bamboo-Cutter”, the movie shows the story of a nymph who descends from the Moon to the Earth.

In his early career, Takahata was inspired by French and other European animators and the tales they told. As his career progressed, he was more engrossed in the stories of his own country. That thought gave birth to the classic “Grave of the Fireflies”, one of the saddest tales ever told in cinema. His interest in telling stories rooted to Japan reaches its height in The Tale of Princess Kaguya.

The movie is painting in motion. Beautiful water-colour hand drawn paintings made me feel like I was watching old Japanese paintings in succession. The animation looks rough (a deliberate choice), the line art gets chaotic at some points (the best use of “abstraction” as said by some of the best animators in the industry) and does what it has to do (bring the characters and story to life).
The main characters are multi-dimensional. The woodcutter seems cold at times when he uses divine powers to name Kaguya a princess and makes her stay as a noble. However, he thinks it is the best thing to happen for a child who was divine herself. Kaguya’s mother is kindlier, although she also desires to make her a princess. Kaguya herself is a fun-loving girl who dreams of escaping back to her village when she is brought to the mansion in the town. Her sense of freedom is depicted well in the scenes in which she unleashes a cat, frees a sparrow from the cage, and dances when she sees sakura in the Spring.
The movie gave me a feeling so intense it is impossible to explain in words. Takahata’s mastery of story-telling, his artistic sense and vision has produced a movie that will soon be regarded as one of the classics.
First published: https://storiesofsandeept.wordpress.com/2021/01/22/movie-review-the-tale-of-princess-kaguya/
#fridayfeature #movies

A short info

Due to my academic research work and my family issues, I may not be able to regularly post or interact with people here. I’ll be around, though as I won’t be too far from my home.
@dancinglightofgrace, if some problem arises, please keep me informed but please don’t expect me to check it as quickly.
Thank you
Sandeept
#admins #admin-updates #news-and-updates

Sharing an old post

This is one of my earliest posts.

The first comment there is from @dancinglightofgrace when his username was Vibrant.

This One is For You!

#sharing

Contacted with Pam!

Hi Anand (@dancinglightofgrace),

I received a mail from Pam from yesterday evening. But I got a bit sick and also had another important task. Sorry for being late.

Pam says she communicated with you via e-mail before deleting some of your posts and she did it because she felt the home page had to be kept fresh before resigning. She had also posted about keeping the forum “current”, hadn’t she? She had also created an archive page. Both of us had opposed the idea if you remember.

She also suggested that writing a post on your blog and sharing the link would be a better idea if you want it preserved. It’s also in the guidelines.

Sandeept

#admin-updates #news-and-updates

Reading All Day!

Read a couple of research papers on landslide. I try my best to understand research papers but a lot of technical terms go over my head.

Today’s papers were relatively easier but the number of reference papers cited (~80) left me in shock. The dedication leaves me flabbergasted. I want some motivation.

To lighten the burden of research papers, I read a novel, Seto Gulab (translation: White Rose) by Anish Thapa.

I had brought this novel along with 3-4 other books last year, locked them up in my shelf and was reading them one after the other whenever I felt like reading. The novel finally got its chance.

It kept me hooked from the beginning to end. The timeline in the story seemed off at times and I felt bored by some of the conversations but in general, an enjoyable book.

Didn’t have a good sleep last night. So, feeling a bit heavy right now. Hoping for a different schedule tomorrow!

#reading

It was a cold day but it’s not that cold!

Paush (December-January) was unexpectedly warm this year. The sun shone brightly almost everyday.

Magh’s first three days have been unexpectedly colder. Clouds are hiding the sun everyday. Cold wind is getting inside the skin.

I was born in Magh twenty five years ago. My mother tells that fog used to be so dense that it would be difficult to see farther than around 10 metres. Cold used to be bitter. Foggy days are gone. Kathmandu is now mostly covered by smog. It is cold but not as much in those days.

My Grandma lives in Biratnagar with my uncle. Biratnagar is hotter than Kathmandu in the summer but in the winter, it is colder.

In terms of minimum temperature, Biratnagar may be higher but the lower difference between maximum and minimum temperature means that you have hard time tolerating the cold.

The duration of cold wave in Terai (e.g. Biratnagar, Birgunj, Nepalgunj, Bhairahava, etc.) is increasing annually. In the hills and mountains rainfall/snowfall is decreasing.

Kathmandu has not seen a drop of rain since October. It’s dry season but last year was wetter. Also, the mountains have lost most of their snow and are looking black. Bad signs for Himalayan river basins.

Once, in my dream, the snow in the mountains of Annapurna Range had disappeared and trees had grown. Seeing the recent photos of mountains, I feel my dream is coming true.

Global warming is affecting our water resources, bringing more diseases and changing our ecology. Even without emitting large amounts of carbon, we are being more affected.

#mountains #winter #global-warming