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Voices of Deoli

December 2012

North Point boys preparing for war

After I gave my book talk, one of the North Point boys (I still refer to them as boys — and Loreto girls — even though most of us are in our 60's and 70's) came to me and said that my story triggered a memory he had of that time. He was one of the senior boys in school and shortly after the 1962 war broke out, the senior boys were taken to a nearby military base and given basic training on how to use rifles in the event the Chinese were to invade Darjeeling. He said half way through the training their guns jammed. This is what really happened to the Indian soldiers at the front and many lost their lives!

Journey continues..

My last entry was on November 28. Several things occurred on our Asian travels in connection with my book. I had brought 3 dozen books to Burma in the hopes of sharing my story with the other alumni from Loreto Convent and North Point, Darjeeling. A full and busy agenda was arranged for us — from sight-seeing, shopping, lunches, to gala dinners and dancing away the evenings. 

I didn't see any opportunity to talk about my book other than on a one-on-one basis. Finally, I on the last day at Bagan, November 15, I spoke to Paula if there was any way I could have 5 to 10 minutes to give a book talk. She thought about it and said it was a full itinerary but had a suggestion that I give a talk on the bus that morning on the way to the lacquer factory. There were two buses, so she said give a talk on one bus on the way to the factory, and then give another talk on the second bus on the way back to the hotel. I happily accepted the offer. Both talks were well received and none of the people had heard of Chinese internment in India and were intrigued with the story. These people were attending school in Darjeeling when the 1962 border war broke out. I ended up selling 20 books and still had enough to take with me to India!
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