Listening to Paul Theroux


I was in Mumbai earlier this week and happened to notice that Paul Theroux had been in town and had given a talk. And then got to know that he was in Bangalore the next day evening. So I sacrificed an additional 750 bucks to Jet Airways, changed my ticket to an earlier flight, braved traffic to Koramangala and made it about 30 minutes late to hear Mr Theroux.

I really do not consider myself a writer-groupie and so have never really attended one of these sessions. But the chance to hear some stuff from a travel writer was definitely tempting (confession : I want to be a travel writer one day. Who does’nt?). And Theroux is pretty big in the game.

He spoke engagingly and with wit. He touched upon the issue of loneliness of the traveller who travels alone. I have felt that so many times, so that was interesting. He gracefully let the irritating Indian tendency of correcting everyone (‘Not Nirad V Chaudhuri, it is Nirad C Chandhuri’) play out. And he even allowed a question from a young, rookie to get the attention it deserved. He did it well – came across as a real gent.

Lurking in one of the obscure shelves of Landmark, close to where I was standing was this book titled ‘Hot Sex – How To Do It‘ (no, not kidding), which did’nt help. In spite of which I heard out the man. So I decided to put up a photo of that book. Would you rather that I had put up a mug shot of Mr Theroux? Gwan, say it.


2 thoughts on “Listening to Paul Theroux

  1. Good to know Paul is getting around the world giving lectures. The great railway bazaar has great strength, suddenly rising off from nowhere in Cairo and surging south. its only weak points occur in Kenya and Uganda when he finally meets up with his long lost African budies who are too over awed to make sense. But by the time Pauls heads south the story rises again and heads for the tremendous climax at the Cape. john otim

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