Pot on Desk

Alok Gotam
2 min readAug 7, 2019


I so love this pot on my desk, it feels like Escher’s Circle Limit. A world complete in itself, with its own laws of mathematics, having its own time-space …

It reminds me of the first time I had encountered the idea of circle limit.

It was 2004, I was in JNU … planned to leave for Lucknow in the evening for Diwali. I went to PVR Priya to grab a book to read for the journey. While I was trying to find the perfect book, I stumbled upon ‘Road To Reality’ by Roger Penrose. I skimmed through the first few pages and to my utter delight, I caught a glimpse of Poincare Disc and got completely enamored by the concept.

I so wanted to buy that book, but it was too expensive … had I bought it, I wouldn’t have left with any money even for my bus ticket. I came back to my hostel — upset and empty-handed. The thought of not being able to buy that book was devastating, so I went again and bought it :). I couldn’t give up my love for the book, even after knowing the dire consequences 😀

Needless to say, I spent Diwali in JNU — Alone, Broke and Hungry — the hostel mess was closed on Diwali :)

But the experience of discovering a new world of Lobachevskian Geometry left me euphoric for weeks 😋