Brooklyn Bridge

Today while sitting in an auditorium, wondering whether the real use of a podium is to hide the shaking legs of the speaker, I saw something written about Brooklyn Bridge in a friend’s notebook. Intrigued, I Googled about it a little and the next thing I remember is that my goosebumps were bigger than the Hulk’s boils.

So the story goes like this: There was a gentleman called John Augustus Roebling. He was an ordinary civil engineer and designed small bridges all his life. So when he started designing a first of its kind hybrid cable-stayed/suspension bridge about 500m long at a meager age of just 63 years, most of the wise men laughed at his stupidity. Well, they were proved correct when later that year, the old man crushed his toe in a small accident at the construction site. Although that problem was solved, but during that process, he developed a tetanus infection and died the same year in which he started the project to make history.

Here I would take a moment and try to think what would have I done if I was in the team. I would have thought sensibly and would go and look for another paying job. But our world wouldn’t have been the way it is if it was full of people like me. It had people like Washington Roebling, the son of the lunatic being talked above. He immediately took the charge of constructing a bridge that was impossible to construct. And he built it? No. That would just be so mainstream Hindi Cinema. Just so cliche.

There was probably something about the project that even God tried His best to stop it. Our new hero, 32 year old Washington got paralyzed at 33 with only a finger left to move. Yes the very next year. And the era we are talking about here is a century before Stephen Hawking. So no supercomputers to track his retina movement. Here I would again take a moment and try to keep myself in Washington’s shoes. “Why God why! Has Euthanasia been legalised yet?”. Fortunately again, people like me didn’t take charge of history. He developed a code so that his wife could understand what he wants to say by the pattern of his finger-tapping on her arm. That’s how our hero no. 2’s wife learnt complex mathematics and engineering from him. By a finger. As soon as she learnt enough, she became the voice of Washington’s eyes. She took instructions and gave orders and herself constantly supervised the construction for the next 11 years.

Finally the Brooklyn Bridge creates history and this is my humble tribute to those who just don’t give up!

Seemed crippled but he
Had the strongest intention.
Obstacles are there for thee
So you overcome them with determination.

Life proves you’re not worthy
Show her your fire.
The fire if burns you and transform to swarthy
Tell her who is theΒ King of shire.

Impossible was everything before being done
Playing easy never that fun.
Those who tried and failedΒ and again the cycle begun
Salute to every rose and gun.

52 thoughts on “Brooklyn Bridge

  1. AdiC April 16, 2015 / 1:23 am

    That gave me goosebumps! Very, very inspiring! And yes, thankfully people like us didn’t exist back then. I’m happy for yesterday, sad for today.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 2:51 am

      But I am relieved to find the most creative people looking for a spot in decision-making πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

      • AdiC April 16, 2015 / 2:58 am

        *Reading between the lines* Thank you! πŸ˜‰

        Liked by 1 person

  2. shambhavi31 April 16, 2015 / 4:03 am

    Wow! It’s really good. An inspiring story. Your poem has summarised it beautifully. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 4:30 am

      Thank you so much, Shambhavi ! When something inspiring is appreciated by you, its really inspiring for me πŸ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  3. izza ifzaal April 16, 2015 / 4:34 am

    This was what I needed to read today to get back my spirits lol but it was amazingly and a energy booster! Thank you Prateek for the great post! πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 4:44 am

      Hehe so glad to hear that, Izza! I hope you have an amazing day now πŸ™‚


  4. shambhavi31 April 16, 2015 / 4:38 am

    I am flattered! πŸ˜› Your words are fuel to this inspiration πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 4:56 am

      I completely agree! Only its hard to believe sometimes. One just has to refrain from losing faith in oneself.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. williamleeone April 16, 2015 / 4:41 am

    A story of belief and determination, one of several that changed the way the world looked “outside the box” Thanks for the reminder.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 5:04 am

      Glad you liked it, William. I came to know about it yesterday only and was moved forever !


  6. payalgajbhiye April 16, 2015 / 5:05 am

    So inspiring…I loved the never-give-up attitude and of course….the poetic tribute…. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 5:21 am

      Thank you much, Payal ! As always, your words of appreciation fill a new energy in me πŸ™‚
      And I feel sometimes it becomes necessary to look at these examples so we don’t forget what we can be if we decide to do something πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • payalgajbhiye April 16, 2015 / 8:09 am

        Very true…I too get fascinated by such examples…especially from history as there was no technology to make life easier, or I shud say….lazier !

        Liked by 1 person

      • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 8:12 am

        You nailed it! Couldn’t agree more to the last words πŸ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 6:11 am

      Archita, I am really indebted to you for your kind words. Thank you so so much. If you found it inspiring, the purpose of the article has been fulfilled πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Hargun Wahi April 16, 2015 / 8:15 am

    Indeed a great man..but not to forget his dedicated wife whose support made seemingly impossible happen!
    And the poem you wrote to summarize the post is brilliant.
    Keep it up πŸ™‚


    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 9:56 am

      Completely agree ! It takes a lot to follow your dreams till the end, but even more to follow someone else’s ! And than you so much, Hargun, for your kind words. So glad you liked it πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  8. JamilaJJ April 16, 2015 / 8:51 am

    You write so captivatingly! The first paragraph pulled me right in. That is so cool that Washington’s wife finished the project for him… I can’t even begin to think how long it would take to learn all that complicated maths from someone’s finger tapping on your arm… Well, first you’d have to learn the code (was it morse?) and then you’d have to get GOOD at it, and then you’d have to be quite patient because I presume it takes longer to have a conversation using the code than it would take to have a normal conversation. And then you’d have to actually learn the maths. But I guess she must have already been good at it when she started, otherwise it would have been virtually impossible.

    Thank you for writing the post! And out of curiosity, is that the real purpose of a podium?? It really got me wondering πŸ™‚ Now I need to know!


    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 10:13 am

      Yes, Jamila their journey would have been tougher than we could even imagine. And also regarding the podium, according to my knowledge it was built to give the speaker a sense of confidence and to raise him above the audience. This is achieved by hiding 80% of the body and it works the same way that we tend to write more freely and honestly in a blog as we have no fear of being judged by strangers. The shaking legs and the trembling fingers are easily hidden by the podium and WordPress πŸ™‚
      I really thank you for taking the time out and stopping by to appreciate. It was a pleasure to know that you liked it πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  9. Kritika Vashist April 16, 2015 / 12:07 pm

    This story is truly inspiring. The way you have narrated it, adds more beauty to it. The poem is incredible. Summarizing something in a poem with rhymes and so perfectly must be a work of a great writer.
    Great post, Prateek. Keep writing πŸ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 2:23 pm

      You really flattered me here, Kritika. I have run out of words after reading this. I know it’ll sound repetitive but thank you so so much. With fellow-writers and motivators like you, I won’t be able to stop writing πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  10. Prajakta April 16, 2015 / 2:02 pm

    Your poem really brought out the message with a flourish πŸ™‚ Great one!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 16, 2015 / 2:28 pm

      Thank you so much, Prajakta. The message came to me and I felt it was worth sharing. I am glad you liked it too ^_^

      Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 17, 2015 / 9:01 am

      Thank you so much, Soumya for the honor! πŸ™‚ Will respond to your questions, as soon as possible πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • Soumya Gupta April 17, 2015 / 9:02 am

        Pleasure πŸ™‚ yeah sure

        Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli April 17, 2015 / 7:05 pm

      I am more than glad you liked it! And no feeling could be better if it could help you in some way or the other.
      Often we need to peek into history for strength which sometimes become hard to find. I hope you have a beautiful and serene weekend πŸ˜‰


  11. preetixd June 19, 2015 / 7:39 pm

    I had no idea that brooklyn bridge has such an inspirational history! The poem, well, you’re always amazing πŸ˜›

    This post reminded me of two of my many favorite quotes,

    “Every accomplishment starts with a decision to try”

    “The harder the struggle, the more glorious the triumph”

    Liked by 1 person

    • Prateek Kohli June 19, 2015 / 7:46 pm

      Loved the quotes. πŸ™‚ And I too was shocked when I came to know about this fiction like history.
      And here’s one from my side for you : “The greatest pleasure in life is to do what people think you cannot do” πŸ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

      • preetixd June 19, 2015 / 7:51 pm

        This quote, it is right there stuck on my cupboard in big bold red letters πŸ˜› I just love to prove the society wrong, it is like the biggest triumph ever. “In your face Society”

        Liked by 1 person

      • Prateek Kohli June 19, 2015 / 7:57 pm

        *High5* For this ! Was my desktop background for months πŸ˜€

        Liked by 1 person

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