Musings of a Pioneer: We Are… Because They Were

“It was sometime in early 1955 and Lallan had been recently married to Imarti. Their parents and even their grandparents had always worked on the fields of their respective zamindars. It seemed that all the families and their ancestors had been working on the fields of others for eternity.” – Excerpt from The Gymnast, Book 1 of Street Performers Series.

1955 – only a few years after independence. People were excited about the newfound freedom, but probably a little uncertain about what the future held for them and for their future generations. That led to the parents, particularly from the middle-classes, to be cautious about the career choices for their children. The only safe options were to study either engineering or medicine. Not wanting their children to go through the uncertain times that they had faced, they were happy with a government job.

But what about people like Lallan and Imarti! What kind of dreams would they have woven on the threshold of a marital life together? Would they even have dreams for the future? Would independence from a colonial power have meant anything to them? What about the countless millions from other countries who found themselves in similar situations in the years to come.

Every generation has dreams for a better life for the next generation. It strives and faces untold hardships to ensure that their children do not suffer the same fate. Roshni’s story in The Gymnast is not the story of the little girl born in 2011. It is also the story of her fore-parents. It is a tribute to the elders.

We are… Because they were.

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