An anthology of short stories by Navin Chandra Joshi has a quintessential old world charm
Navin Chandra Joshi had always been a storyteller. He loved to narrate anecdotes of interesting, inspiring people whom he met or observed in his childhood days. He wanted to put down these stories on paper put the dream was pushed further and further given his work schedule until his wife and children pushed him to write a book last year. “It didn’t take me more than six months to gather my thoughts and write these 16 stories,” he tells us.
The old world charm is intact in these stories, giving us insights into the lives of people we may see around us in our day-to-day lives without paying much attention to. “All the stories and characters I’ve written about in Buddhu’s Legacy (Notion Press publication; Rs. 225) are culled out from real-life characters,” says Joshi.
There’s a dedicated watchmaker Buddhu for whom repairing wrist watches is more a way of living than a source of income. He may not recognise his customers by their faces but will immediately recognise a wrist bearing a watch repaired by him. Joshi pays tribute to the humble watchmaker as he does to his Mathematics teacher who did the impossible by making Math fun for his students. Then, there’s the curious case of an English officer nicknamed ‘Tunde Laat’ who lost one hand following an injury he sustained in war.
“More than a 100 stories came to mind when I set about writing. Some of them would have made for a boring read. So I began sifting and choosing the best among them and came down to 16,” says Joshi.
A retired engineer who now divides his time between Mumbai and Hyderabad, Joshi’s stories cover different eras, from the 1950s to 2012. The stories are a result of people Joshi observed in Delhi, Mumbai and Hyderabad. “I had the habit of penning down anything noteworthy in my diary, which made things a lot easier for me to write this book. It’s an anthology of memories that I tried to put together in an interesting way. My family is, as expected, appreciative of my work. But I’d like feedback from those who read the book,” he signs off.