We, the Seven, gives a peek into the childhood days of seven siblings in Delhi in the 1950s and early 1960s. They formed a well-knit team of witty planners, ready to play pranks and indulge in activities for sheer fun. The author narrates in interesting detail the humorous episodes of their childhood days to bring a smile on the faces of the young and the old alike. Most of the siblings are themselves parents and grandparents now, and whenever they meet, they never fail to recall the affection and guidance they received from their parents.
Seniors will enjoy the episodes just as the children would, the former to relive their childhood days and the latter to get a glimpse of the world that was available to the children in the good old days. It shows that the children then were relatively free to perform with no social media or electronic gadgets to divert their attention from the joys of nature. The book also gives a indelible glimpse of a bygone Delhi just after Independence.
Anuradha Prasad has been writing stories for children's magazines for a long time. She has written on a variety of subjects - science fiction, travel, environment and fiction and has been closely associated with schoolchildren for more than thirty-five years. Her book, Momo's Adventures was recently published as an e-book by Amazon.
AV TE ARE SEVEN SIBLINGS, three brothers and W four sisters, professionals in different fields. When we meet at functions and have some free time, we sit down and discuss the good old days (of 1950s and 60s) we spent together in Delhi, recall some of our childhood pranks, foolish but full of humour. Perhaps that's the reason we remember them even now. Those days were different. We were carefree, close to nature, and often spent the whole day playing. When mother was happy, she lovingly called us Saptrishi (seven stars of Great Bear), while in an angry mood she would address us as `Ravan ki Sena' (the demon's army).
We had a large compound to play in and execute our wild plans. The elder four of us normally carried out our plans together, calling ourselves Char Chogara (four devils) while the three younger ones were named Teen Tigara (three musketeers). Both groups worked independently and rarely knew about each other's plans and activities though a deep bond always existed between them.
We lived in a spacious bungalow in the Civil Lines, Delhi, allotted to our father, a senior government doctor at that time. There we spent the days close to nature in the vast compound full of trees and covered by bushes on all sides. In its vicinity was the green ridge of Delhi and the Yamuna river, where we often went for a stroll and collected natural treasures. Watermelon and melons were available in abundance on its banks. We bought them quite often during our morning walks.
All of us were fond of pets and had collected a number of stray pups, much to the annoyance of our mother. Each day had some excitement in store for us.
Those wild and hurly-burly activities are now our precious memories. Rapid urbanization and technological changes have altered Delhi's character and environment. Green stretches have given way to concrete buildings, lakes and ponds have disappeared and many beautiful gardens have vanished. The present Gujranwala Town and Shalimar Bagh in those days were lush green orchards. The beautiful ridge across the Mall Road, around Manjnu Ka Teela is hardly visible. The vast expansion of the city has mercilessly destroyed the green cover which we saw in the 1950s. Children have no place to play and are becoming the slaves of modern technology.
We, The Seven, has been written to highlight the childhood pranks and other activities of seven brothers and sisters who are now parents and grandparents. Such pranks are part of the day-to-day activities of children and are normally forgotten as they grow up. Yet they reflect an innocent child's mind in its purest form. It also shows the difference in the way children used to play and amuse themselves several decades ago.
Technology determines the nature of entertainment today. Games are aimed at sharpening a child's intelligence, unlike the games of those days which were mostly outdoor, more physical and wild in nature, and played in groups. Leisure time activities did not require electronic gadgets, as is done today.
Today, when I see children going to school with a heavy load on their back looking tired and stressed, I wonder if they would ever have time to run after parrots hiding in the green cover or a squirrel running with nuts. Do they see the Saptrishi (Great Bear) at night? If not, they must do so, as nature is our best friend, forever with us.
The seven brothers and sisters in order of seniority are: Anuradha, Sushma, Ajay, Arvind, Promila (also called Kanchan), Pratima and Arun.
I would suggest to all readers of this book, young and old, to recall some of the escapades or funny episodes of their lives and see if they still tickle them. One can always pick out threads from our memory box and laugh over them.
**Contents and Sample Pages**
Item Code: NAR225 Author: Anuradha Prasad Cover: HARDCOVER Edition: 2019 Publisher: Sparrow Books, New Delhi ISBN: 9788193299296 Size: 7.50 X 5.00 inch Pages: 196 (28 B/W Illustrations) Other Details: Weight of the Book: 0.27 Kg