Impromptu / Extempore speeches
17. The world is a smaller place these days
There was a time, when crossing the dangerous shores of Cape of Good Hope was a seen as a most propitious thing, by the mariners of the west.
People spoke of Mesopotamia, Tigris, Ganges, the New World, Persia, the Dark Continent, the South Pacific Islands, Tahiti, Sahara, the Middle East, the Far East, Sumatra, Djibouti and of the South American continent with a mood of awe, in hushed tones, as if they were all on the frontiers of the universe. The seas and oceans were vast, and on the far ends of them, lay the edges of the world.
Travel took an immensity of time.
I need not remind you of the tales that Marco Polo narrated. Of the exotic ruler, Kublai Khan of China. One may even remember the silk route that extended from China, and moved through the Golden Triangle of Jaisalmer, Jaipur and Bikaner, the cities that rose up in the desert sands of Rajasthan.
There was a time, when the English rulers of British-India could take independent decisions without waiting for an approval from Great Britain.
However, over the years, the world shrank. First came the under-the-sea cable that connected British-India with England. The decision-making power in the governing of British-India moved effectively to the parliament of England.
After that what all things have come up, all from technology!
Think of the steam ships, the railways, the aeroplanes, the phones, the radio, the television, the geostationary satellite, the automobiles, the computers, the Internet and the mobile phones.
Well, in the last few years, the globe has shrunk as never before. We talk about far off events as if they happen near us. The Internet along with the geostationary satellites have enabled us to see live scenes that happen in far-off locations.
Gentlemen, I remember the time, when the People’s Liberation Army of China attacked the agitating people at the Tiananmen Square. People in the US were shocked to see the actual shooting and beating up, as it happened in the far-off land.
Well, that happened a few decades back. Now, China is no more a far-off place for the US. In fact, China is only a few clicks away on the computer. One can get things from China in a matter of seconds, if they are downloadable from the internet.
16. About English!