William Shakespeare once said, "What's in a name? / That which we call a rose / By any other name would smell as sweet". My name has stumped almost everyone who has come across it. I could always tell when substitute teachers in school would reach my name during attendance because it was always accompanied by a heavy pause before the faltering attempt that was often followed by a rush apology. I will admit when you first read the name "Srinidhi Vangala" it is not evident how it should be said.
For a while, I would let it go when people said my name wrong and just move on but lately, I have stopped letting it fly. A name is much more than what people call you. It defines you and is what you are remembered as. Your name associates to memories people have of you so wouldn't you want that to be correct for them to remember you properly? As for me, I always remember the story my mom told me about how my name came to be. My mom has two siblings. Her older sister already had one boy and his name is Sriniketh. My mom is very close to her sister and she wanted my name to have "Sri" in the beginning. With that, she added "Nidhi". Put it together and my name is "Srinidhi" meaning gold treasure.
By the end of 2006, there are 6 of us cousins from my mom's side of the family. From oldest to youngest: Sriniketh, Snigdha, Srinidhi, Srihtiha, Srikar, Shashank. See a pattern here? We proudly call ourselves the "S cousins". Many people we encounter are always baffled by us and are always left in confusion. I guess we have our parents to thank for that.
Yes, my name is hard to say. It is not the typical name you come across every day. But to say someone's names correctly shows respect. When you don't take the basic steps in order to accomplish something as simple as pronouncing a name it says a lot more about you than the other person. It is my opinion that if we can learn how to pronounce the spells in Harry Potter, the names in Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones then it is more than possible to pronounce the names of our peers around us. While it might be embarrassing to ask and maybe a little awkward I can guarantee the people who have tough names will appreciate it more.