Yesterday, I suddenly got emails and calls from Bombay and New York because Bobby Sharma from Bangalore found my book at Crossword and posted the link on an internet group. The friends who contacted me belong to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Rourkela-Mates. An internet group on Rourkela. Wow. So nice to see us bond, its been active since 2002, almost when I started writing Sepia Leaves!
Here is my response:
thank you for inviting me here.
I did not study in REC and I did not do my Class X or XII in Rourkela. Still, I was born in Indira Gandhi Hospital and I walked the sector roads and got bird droppings on my shoulders in Rourkela One. I saw movies in Konark and Apsara and ate rasogullas in Ambagan and cholle bhature at Renu Menu. I once even sneaked into the plant lying under a seat in an ambulance. Dr Bose, the secretary to the CMO was our neighbour.
For personal reasons which Bains uncle’s son Harrit mentions I had to keep returning to Rourkela but it stays in my heart. I learnt Oriya in its streets, Hindi in its markets, Punjabi at home, and English in its schools.
A few weeks ago a friend of mine who works in PR asked me to find a Rourkela group and announce my book. I was tied up and am very glad you found me out. Today I was a bit surprised at Capt Raj’s mail, then Lalit called (Happy Birthday!), then Anand (I think) called from New York. Thanks Bobby for putting me up here. Yes, I owed it to all of you to tell you about the book earlier, apologies for not doing that. Sepia Leaves has a lot of Rourkela in it, it is a Rourkela story. Hope you like it; please let me know if you do not. I will keep reading news about you here, and participate when I can.
One of the reviews:
PS: For propriety reasons I have changed some names and some minor details. Hope you do not mind the changes. I hope I have been able to capture the spirit of the city. Please respond if you wish to exchange views, and do let me know when you plan a get together in Delhi or Bangalore.
Tags: Connections, Friends, Group, Rourkela