I don’t know whether eating durians would cause a major wind problem but the death toll in Philippines from today’s super-typhoon, Typhoon Durian, is no laughing matter. But I’m not going to talk about the typhoon directly. What I find interesting is the typhoon has been given a name that is familiar to us in Malaysia. You see, durian, a pungent fruit encased in spiky cover, is a favorite pastime here.
Typhoon durian has got me interested in finding out how typhoons are named. Apparently, there were 14 countries involved in the naming. Collectively, they contributed more than a hundred names. Interestingly, though, ‘Durian’ moniker was not contributed by Malaysia but its neighbor, Thailand. Malaysia offered ‘Jelawat’, ‘Sepat’, ‘Rusa’, ‘Melor’ and ‘Merbok’ from the names of animals, and ‘Rumbia’, ‘Tapah’, ‘Nangka’, ‘Meranti’ and ‘Mawar’ from the names of plants.
At the rate typhoons are coming around this time of year we should be reaching Typhoon Sepat, the name of a freshwater fish, soon. We have got ten more typhoons to go if I have understood the sequence correctly.