Why This Book ?
An Ordinary Childhood
This is not a novel, story, report or history. May be it can be closely defined as history. A history relevant to the writer, that’s me. What is history? History, I believe, is nothing but a recall of the past. A recall, as long as it stays in one’s mind is just memories; when you document it , it becomes history.
Sometimes, I wonder how much can a human brain store. We keep on piling new stuff in the brain, yet the oldest of the memories remain as bright as an incident of yesterday. May be even brighter than that! We tend to forget current matters, but we don’t forget what is already preserved in the mind.
What prompted me to write this stuff? Perhaps the need to carry my memories beyond my good health, or may be beyond my life. Some day my mind may slow down so much that even a recall may be a difficult exercise. It happens with people. I have seen it happening in my family.
My wife, Renu, asked me –‘ Why are you writing about your own childhood? Will it make any interesting reading for others? ‘ Before I could think of a suitable reply, she threw a rejoinder at me – ‘ When famous people write their autobiography, people love to read that, because that gives them an insight to the journey of a person from being born as an ordinary man to become a special man.’
I got my clue from her dialogue. I said- ‘Precisely that is the reason. There are plenty of autobiographies available in book stores for people to read, but is there any such book of an ordinary person? My writing is not even a complete autobiography but only the childhood part of an ordinary person.’
My argument suggested me a nice name for my memoirs –‘ An Ordinary Childhood’.
So that is about the content of this book. It deals with my memories of my childhood beginning with my birth in 1956 and ending with my school education in 1974. Beyond school, I don’t call it a childhood hence did not include any memory beyond. May be someday, I will start writing further from where I leave here.
I don’t claim that this could be very interesting reading for you, but one thing which I can claim is that it will take you through a time journey which has been changing rapidly in my times. The change of post independence era into a modern era; the change of a rural flavor into an urban outfit and the change of outlook of a small child into that of a teenager!