I have started reading a novel by Jhumpa Lahiri and after reading only a few pages of that novel I started picturing myself in that novel in which I related to it from the beginning.
“Now she is alone cut off by curtains from the three other women in the room … a gentle twitch from her baby reminds that she is, technically speaking, not alone. Ashima thinks that it’s strange that her child would be born in a place that most people enter either to suffer or to die. “
not that I know what it feels like to be pregnant or to have contractions but the feeling that you are alone in an unfamiliar place with nothing but time, a bit of anxiety and a feeling in your guts that foreshadows a better tomorrow, however for Ashima, the mother in the story, it was her son which foreshadows a new life a new beginning for her and her baby. However in my case I don’t know what that feeling was it could have been a bad tuna salad.
Earlier in the book they flashback to Ashoke, Ashima’s husband later on in the book, and his experience with the train crash, and how his favourite book The Overcoat by his favourite author Nicolai Gogol, saved his life.
“But the lantern’s light lingered, just long enough for Ashoke to raise his hand, gesture that he believed would consume the small fragment of life left in him. He was still clutching a single page of “The Overcoat,” crumbled tightly in his fist, and when he raised his hand wad of paper dropped from his fingers.”
That was how Ashoke was found and saved. If it wasn’t for the piece of paper that fell from his hand he wouldn’t have been found and saved. That shows the importance of that book to the family, the baby doesn’t know it yet; which ultimately sets the whole idea of that name’s importance.
Later on in the Ashima and her husband Ashoke have some trouble with naming the baby, because of Bengali tradition and what not, so they decided to give him the pet name “Gogol”, which refers to Nicolai Gogol the author of “The Overcoat” that saved Ahoke’s life, until they can decide what his real name would be. This basically introduces the whole idea of a namesake and what it means to the father and the rest of the family.