The Brown Cliffs of Dover

I remember walking through London once and coming across the statues of some Generals who had been glorified for their roles in subduing India. Real colonial heroes. I was reminded of this when I read a lovely post by Neha about a day trip she recently made to Dover.

 Everywhere you go in the UK - India stares down at you. In the buildings the motifs come from subcontinent. Some term that you remember staring at in a History book. War Memorials that erupt with desi names. Like when I met Albert on the bus from Hounslow to Central London one day. He was 80 years old and had been in India in the 1940s. He looked at me with all the gravity the situation always brings and said “I was never in the Army my love. Now, I just was doing business. Never the Army. ” More on that story another time.

I have met a couple of the old British Army men and struck up conversations with them too in the past. They always want to tell you about their years in India and the things they did, and spoke affectionately about the place. Strange fact - Enoch Powell was in India for a couple of years and spoke fluent Urdu and Hindi.

 

2 Responses to “The Brown Cliffs of Dover”

  1. neha Says:

    Thanks for the generous plug! I love striking up conversations - and old men seem ready to tumble with talk.

    I just wish I could hold of some old women for that kind of talk.

  2. sonia Says:

    random conversations are always the best. i feel one of my writing projects somewhere down the line could be something along the lines of ‘random people across the world ive met’..such a wealth of insight!

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