Divided they livedIn his letters home to Grace, Christopher painted a picture of England that was difficult to believe. His letters were full of the cold. ‘What on earth’s the matter with Christopher?’ asked Thornton irritably when he read them. ‘Why does he have to exaggerate everything?’ Christopher folded his disappointments in light blue aerogrammes, sending them home like small bullets of emotion. Now that I am here I can see how wonderful it really is in Ceylon, he wrote. Our country has so much to offer, its past is so rich and vibrant. All we do is destroy it.
When the Fuhrer came callingThe buzz was strong. A new Deputy Commandant had been posted to the Academy. When Commodore Ferreira, who looked, thought and acted like (German Field Marshal Erwin Johannes Eugen) Rommel, took over from his army counterpart, the cadets were delighted because, it was believed that unlike their army counterparts, the navy chaps were a lenient lot. Our happiness was short-lived. Ferreira proved to be a man wilier than the Desert Fox, and soon he had earned the label ‘Ferreira the Fuhrer’, courtesy Bertie......At dot 6 a.m., a voice barked in the dark, ‘Stand where you are.’ The voice was stern in inflection, loud in tenor, and impeccable in accent. We stood rooted to the spot.
Excerpted from Boots Belts Berets by Tanushree Podder
Price: Rs 295
(With permission from Roli Books)
Encounter of the imaginary kindThe very first thing I was asked to do at Dr Hoffman’s was to see the dream sequence before my eyes—scene by scene and narrate it exactly as I saw it. All my previous attempts at doing that had been miserable failures… it had been too agonising. But I have to admit Dr Hoffman made it a lot easier. It was the first time I could spell out exactly what I saw and how I felt, down to the most painful details. “My dear girl, what you are scared of has nothing to do with your real life. It is some imaginary fear that has taken deep roots into your sub-conscious. And… you and I are going to drive it away,” Dr Hoffman had said… “What you have to do is recognise that you are a healthy, intelligent girl and then, when you recount the dream to me…scene by scene…you will see for yourself that there is nothing to be scared of.”