Sunday, 19 August 2012

Science Express' Curious visitors ...

"Science is our food"

In Brahmapur, Odisha, the Science Communicators on the SEBS had a unique experience. Being in coach 1, I witnessed a trio of interested young boys making the journey through our train for the second time that morning. One thing lead to another, and soon, I was impressing upon them the need to care for their surroundings, and most importantly, find out the details regarding the biodiversity of Brahmapur and the problems facing it.

"Planting trees is level one", I said. "You boys must upgrade to level two." The boys soaked in every word about Government efforts, about the necessity of biodiversity and dependance of humans on biodiversity. After spending quite some time with them, the trio moved on to the second coach. Much later, when I was leaving for my lunch break, I found them talking to Ankit Kapoor (a fellow Science Communicator) in coach 7. Apparently, they had reached coach twelve when they had a doubt regarding radiation, so they walked back to coach four to talk to Rubul Borah. After wishing them the best, I went on my way. Imagine my surprise, then, when I returned from lunch and the boys were still in coach twelve. They had not yet exited the train! I asked them whether they had lunch, and one of the boys replied with all the innocence and honesty that only childhood bestows, "Sir, the science and information we have learnt on this train itself is sufficient. We don't need lunch."

I've always been amazed by nature and matters related to the scientific disciplines, but to hear that this trio of boys had been waiting outside our train from 9 am that day, and were yet to leave the train well-past three pm was a shock even to me. The determination, desire and simplicity with which these boys approached our train made me look at our train in a whole new light. It inspired me to believe that there can be young folk out there who are passionate enough to spend time to educate themselves about the world around them. Definitely, such young people can take this world to a better place.

Oh, and I almost forgot to mention. Two of the boys were back again that evening, by half-past six at the railway station, and stayed till about half-past eight to "see us off". We just couldn't believe the respect and admiration these boys showed for our train, and the science communicators aboard the train.

- Daniel Divyakumar H (Science Communicator)

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