The Aurangzeb story

I remember my music teacher once telling me, speaking about her daughter, “Oh, she’s a regular Aurangzeb.” Meaning, she didn’t like music, which clearly was upsetting to my teacher. Meaning, by extension, Aurangzeb disliked and discouraged music. That’s what we’ve been led to believe.

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Stories about stories

I love the Swedish writer Astrid Lindgren. She wrote primarily for children, but for many years she worked as a books editor, and was also a fearless political commentator. An official Swedish website has an article by David Wiles headlined: “Astrid Lindgren spoke, people listened.”

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The classroom in a book

Sometimes, the oddest book captures your fancy. I’m a typical case, right through school totally terrified of arithmetic and anything mathematical. Thanks to an inspiring teacher, Mrs Rajam, and a question paper in the public exam that was entirely based on common sense, I managed to do

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Gifting ideas

The other day, my sister who lives in London and I were on the phone, when suddenly, out of the blue, she said, “You know, you got me Winnie-the-Pooh from Shimla.” The gears shifted and a memory fell in place.

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Summer magic

The summer that the Indian men’s cricket team recorded a memorable home series win against the Australians, my 11-year-old came down with chickenpox. Predictably, I followed suit, and as we were the only two in the house and life had to move on, my aunt moved in

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