Tuesday, December 7, 2010

A Mum's Take on Bookaroo

Till now, you have been only reading blog posts about Bookaroo from us or the Bookaroo volunteers. We asked our Twitter friend Sairee Chahal is she would guest blog for us and share her Bookaroo experience with our readers. Sairee is one of the founders of fleximoms and also one of the founder consultants of SAITA Consulting. Sairee says "I love my work with Fleximoms and SMBs at SAITA Consulting. And I am Vera's mum, who is 3 years old".

Bookaroo is really special for many reasons. Yes, it is about books, children, the world of story-telling, experiencing Delhi in its finest weather, at most interesting venues and loads of carnival like fun and above all the habit of reading. But for me the most valuable thing about Bookaroo is that Venky (M.Venkatesh) and Swati Roy are passionate about it. I see Bookaroo and I know Eureka is associated with it. Something resonates in me - it tells me that a person can do what he wants to do, what he loves to do, enjoy it and make a meaningful living of it.

Let me take a step back, Venky is my first boss - the man who gave me my first job, the man who taught me how to edit pages, do layouts, report stories, among many other things. And Swati is a colleague, for whom I have immense respect for and whose professional commitment I hold in high regard. Over ten years ago, Venky was an editor with Spectrum Magazines - the group that published A&M (Advertising and Marketing), Global, Design Digest, among other publications. Not many people know that he is a qualified CA and a career journalist, with an impeccable track record.

So when Venky and Swati decided to set up Eureka - bookstore for the young, the cynic voices found it hard to digest. Bookshop in age of videogames, changing consumer habits - things MR experts would sneer at. Now that Eureka and Bookaroo are here, we love it. But it has been an uphill journey for all involved. For every one hour of reading time, there are 10 others waiting to impinge on our time and attention. For every ounce of simplicity, there is a pound of complexity waiting to hound us.

But here we are Bookaroo like the flag that points to that change we are making. The loud brash party hopping city has the best Children's reading event, gets writers, publishers, readers together and people love it. For me it is more than a event, it is really how we chose to live our lives, even if we don't start at the position of advantage. Doing that thing that should be done because it is good for all of us in long term, however hard it is. Isn't it?

Yes, I have a 3 year old and she loves stories, books, reading. Our day at Bookaroo was really special, we loved it, something we will talk about for a while. Vera did ask me if that is what we are going to do every Saturday. I wish, we could :)

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