A tale of bravery, resilience and acceptance of underdogs who belong to more than one country!
The goal of bringing my family to Australia may seem like an extraordinary accomplishment, but to me it was more than that – it was a message I wanted to champion that if you believe in something, you can do it against all odds, especially when it involves improving and enriching the lives of your loved ones.
Conceptualising and writing The Indian Mate came with its own set of challenges, but I never lost sight of why I was doing it, or the importance of the message I wanted to convey. I kept pushing myself bit by bit to bring it out of me, which led to many sleepless nights, being awake at 4am, laughing, crying and reliving parts of my life that were buried so deep. With the help of my family, friends and my own sense of purpose, I was able to accomplish it
Around 600 pages and 200,000 words after half a decade of writing! The process of writing The Indian Mate was a journey of its own. The two volumes of the Indian Mate relive a story of people like me: people who left behind everything that they have ever known to create a better future for themselves and their loved ones; people who are from two different countries, but don’t fully belong to either; people who realise that their lives in two different countries have forged a new identity for them.
My journey from Namaste to How-r-ya.
I hope you enjoy reading the book just as much as I enjoyed writing it.
The Indian Mate Volume 1
The stories of Partition in India in 1947 were an ingrained part of my childhood: the human endurance and triumph amongst the heart wrenching tragedies arising from the biggest migration in human history.
The first volume narrates how families like mine navigated this turbulent period. It then chronicles my own experience of growing up in extreme financial hardship in a middle-class family in modern India that was increasingly getting mired in the Eastern and Western cultural clashes and economic disparity and my efforts to move to Australia, a country with new possibilities for myself and my family.
The Indian Mate Volume 2
Volume 2 uncovers the unique Australian experience through the eyes of an NRI (Non-Resident Indian) who later became an Australian citizen. It chronicles my journey from being a student in Australia with crushing expectations, $1000 and a bag full of dreams with feelings of homesickness and isolation, who faced years of personal, professional and cultural challenges to be the person I am today.
It recounts the journey of self-discovery from a point in my life where I felt that I belonged neither to India nor to Australia to a realisation that in fact I have acquired a new identity forged from my experiences in these two countries.