Sunday, July 1, 2012

sandcastles - a hazhard - fortunately not in India


Simplest of things could become complicated, at times  …..

In olden days, children used to enjoy themselves playing with nature, trying to be creative at every opportunity – those were not the days of computers, computer games and television shows of WWE and other bloody sports. 

The resources were less i.e., the amount spent for entertainment was not high – so more of nature and natural products into every game they played.  People would remember their childhood, the locality they grew – the river beds and more. The river beds were perennial source of entertainment and tranquilty.  When the river was flowing full, people would dive and swim exhibiting their valour – most would sit on the banks enjoying breeze and chit chatting of a host of things, most of which would be on local occurrences – in places like Chennai, it was the beach, the sea-shore which provided the serene surrounding.

Sure you would have watched young boys and girls exhibiting unbridled enthusiasm and creativity in building – yes building sand castles – it was what they saw or what they could imagine – some ordinary others beautifully – closer to the water –using the water and sand in engineering a marvel of a product with precision of a seasoned engineer – the unbounded joy that came upon accomplishment was always a treat to watch.  They would call with pride, everyone in the vicinity to see ‘ what they have built’ – a campaign which would belittle the present day marketeers.

No equipments, no trained artisans, but always good team-work in creating something where nothing existed…….. a structure arising out of simple sand.  – sometimes, they would fall on their own, sometimes accidentally the creators themselves would unlodge a portion, sometimes it could be nature – the wind or the water and some other times, a bigger villain would demolish the patiently carved out structure. 

Such playtime have become a thing of the past – modern day children do not find time and place for these, nor are their parents creating such a congenial atmosphere  !   Sure it was a pleasure to build something closer to the waves on the sand see the waves slowly reaching out and washing the fort away.

Can you ever imagine that this would pose a risk ? – elsewhere in US, local authorities  asked a man to tear down a sand castle he and his 7-year-old daughter built at a local beach after a town official said it posed a risk.  It was a simple 3 foot high castle which was thought as a potential liability.  To the local Director, the sand castle was a “big huge mound of sand” that looked like a fish and had wooden boards sticking out of it. Some of the wood had nails and hence was a potent threat to others who would frequent the place.  It is reported that the builder left without tearing the castle down and that it was later destroyed by the town.

Reports suggest that the Town does not have a policy against sandcastles, according to the beach rules posted on the town website.  The local authority was strongly suggesting to the maker that sand castles are illegal on the beach as they post public safety hazard for trips and falls.    The town recreation director said that the castle had been made with wood and had nails and hence a hazhard.

The incident reportedly occurred at Barrington, a town in Bristol County, Rhode Island, United States which has a tiny population of less than 20000.  Few years earlier, CNN magazine had  ranked Barrington sixth on its list of the 100 best places to live in the United StatesRhode Island, officially the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, is a state in the New England region of the United States. Rhode Island's official nickname is "The Ocean State," a reference to the State's geography, since Rhode Island has several large bays and inlets that amount to about fourteen (14) percent of its total area.

Funny are the ways of people – fortunately such things do not happen in India !!!

With regards – S. Sampathkumar.

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