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Kovilpatti: My Own Malgudi

As a child Malgudi Days was my first exposure to the life in a village. The people R. K. Narayan described were colorful and fascinating. For the first time I started to see more to people than what met the eye. There was so much more to people’s lives – the drama, the stories!

I started to look forward to staying in a small town or village and getting to know the people and life there. Not that there wasn’t enough drama in the city but rather just that people in cities didn’t have time to stop and talk. And so, I travelled and talked to people across India, getting to know them and their lives. I was hooked!

Then as the universe has a way of giving us what we want, I married Che who’s roots lay in a small town in Tamil Naidu (did I say I have a thing for South India? I belong here). The first time I came to Kovilpatti was as a new bride and everyone went out of their way to make this non-Tamil speaking girl feel at home. I did feel at home but then the first time I thought it was just because I was new. Not True! Not true at all!

With every visit I get to know people better, their lives unfold with its stories, twists and turns and intrigue. And every time I feel more at home. Its the place yes but more than that, its the people. Here people have the time to talk and share their lives. They take the time, every time to make me feel a part of it. Me the hesitating, English speaking girl who needs everything explained repeatedly, slowly and with gestures.

This is my own Malgudi, a quaint little town filled with colorful people and stories at every corner. This is the India of my heart, the real India in all its colourful splendour!

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