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An evening with Ruskin Bond

Ruskin Bond has been an integral part of my childhood years. I remember his funnily written stories, with references to goats and the hills and of course, delectable dishes. It was indeed a pleasure to revisit some of those much-loved stories at our reading last evening at the Springwoods Clubhouse Park.

The rains added more magic as we huddled together to listen to Karthickeyan give us a a brief biography of the author. This was followed by Krithi, who read an extract of 'The Photograph'. Saishree gave us a vivid account of the story 'The Cherry Tree' and also read us an excerpt.

Ruskin Bond is a very versatile writer, who effortlessly shifts genre from gentle to scary or from funny to romantic. This was made evident through Srushti's reading of one of his chilling horror stories, 'Return of the White Pigeon', especially in those low tones of hers! It surely sent a shiver down our spine.

Thankfully, we were provided comic relief just after by Surabhi's reading from 'At School With Ruskin Bond', which talks about the comical Mr.Oliver and Bond's experiments with cooking. I read out from one of my favourite stories, 'Snake Trouble', which kept the children grinning.

We also strayed into discussions on films based on Ruskin Bond's work, like 'The Blue Umbrella'and 'Saat Khoon Maaf'. It was indeed a fruitful evening, spent discussing beautiful stories by one of the gentlest and most unassuming writers India has ever known.

"I have never been a fast walker, or a conqueror of mountain peaks, but I can plod along for miles. And that's what I've been doing all my life — plodding along, singing my song, telling my tales in my own unhurried way. I have lived life at my own gentle pace, and if as a result I have failed to get to the top of the mountain (or of anything else), it doesn't matter, the long walk has brought its own sweet rewards; buttercups and butterflies along the way." (Ruskin Bond, during an interview. Read the full version here. )

We love you, Ruskin Bond ! :)

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