Babel fish

I have now developed a long and significant list of excuses for why I’m unable to speak ANY foreign languages:

The British Raj, due to them the English language is so prevalent I can easily get by without Kannada here in Mysore.

British Arrogance, see above.

My parents and therefore my genetical inheritance.

Wax in my ears and assorted other hearing limitations.

A wife and extended team that speaks English and seemingly endless other languages. I get by.

Teachers that couldn’t cram French or German in me.

Probably the top of the tree…. abject laziness combined with being idle, severe inability to stick with anything for more than five minutes and being 🐻 of small brain.

This list is to help whenever I’m questioned why after nine years do I not speak Kannada. (Clearly I cant speak English properly anyway)

STOP PRESS

Manjula reckons it’s because Ive got a short stubby tongue.

Whereas Manjula, with all the languages at her disposal, yes you’ve guessed it, has a long slender one.

I rest my case

Who is Cochrane?

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According to ‘The Times’ (in UK) :

“He was a Radical, whereas those were the palmy days of Toryism. He was outspoken, whereas officials admire reticence and discretion. He was resolute in exposing abuses, and therefore constantly creating trouble. He was impractible – a term still in favour for describing inconvenient excellence; and he head a strong spirit of independence – a quality which as very recent controversies have shown is singularly obnoxious to the official mind.”

This biography of a unique man, helps illustrate how institutions such as the Royal Navy in late 18th and early 19th century were corrupt and how the establishment ‘looked after its own’ and wouldn’t countenance the challenges represented by the radical movement and in this case Lord  Cochrane.

In some ways it helps show how Britain might have introduced or at the very least encouraged those practices through the British Raj in India.

Back to Cochrane. Historian Sir Archibald Alison stated…

Lord Cochrane was, after the death of Nelson, the greatest naval commander of that age of glory. Equal to his great predecessor in personal gallantry, enthusiastic ardour, and devotion to his country, he was perhaps his superior  in original genius, inventive power and inexhaustible resources.