A Book Review of – I Take This Train Too by Cyrus Daruwala
My Dear Readers I am sure, by now you know how much I love travelling by trains, and have written posts about not only travelling in trains but also steps to book train tickets in tatkal on IRCTC website. But recently I discovered somebody who not only loves taking train but also writes about it. I discovered about the book “I Take This Train Too” on the crowd funding site Wishberry, where author Cyrus Daruwala was looking for funding for his book. Needless to say I immediately fell in love with the concept of a book about travel in local trains in Mumbai and sent my little contribution. Now Wishberry crowd funding is different from model of Rangde, and the focus of Wishberry is more on artistic pursuits like books, music, movies etc.
Yesterday I received my copy of “I Take This Train Too”, that too signed by author Cyrus Daruwala. Cyrus is an adman, writer, cartoonist and above all a Mumbai local commuter. Now those who have traveled in Mumbai locals will know that it is not for the faint hearted. I myself during my few years of stay in Mumbai took the local only a few times from starting point to end point, as I never could muster enough courage to get in or get out of a local mid way.
Cyrus begins the book by giving you a little lesson on the socio economic and geographic islands that demarcate the class boundaries in Mumbai with help of a colored Map of Mumbai. The clearly marked boundaries are created by affluence differential in the Mumbai society over last century, with the old money still ghettoized in the haloed precinct of Town, as the South Bombay is called. Cyrus being a Mumbaikar himself talks about the clogged heart of the Mega city in dire need of a bypass surgery, while its residents continue with their daily commute in the locals where the millionaires jostle for space with the machee-walee (fisher women).
The book is carefully hand bound with colourful threads and will stand out in your bookshelf. My copy came in a beautiful cover illustrated by Cyrus, along with an A4 size poster of Mr. Loudspeaker. Not only Mr. Loudspeaker you will get to meet Mr.Sicko, Mr.Starer, Mrs. Judger and many more Local locals in the book. Each character has a dedicated page with the beautiful illustration competing with subtle humour in narration. I say subtle as you need to really understand the nuances of the Indian society, especially Mumbaikars to appreciate the many things that Cyrus conveys in a single sentence. Once you get the gist of the matter your smile will not leave your face. The narration is in form of thought process of the traveler in local and makes you remember your co passengers in your journeys.
Here is a sample “I could have easily taken SICK LEAVE and stayed at home. But I didn’t want to infect my family”
Or take this one: “I await the day my stocks and shares recover. Then you’ll see. You’ll all see.” Any guesses who this guy is ?
At only 97 pages including 2 beautiful postcards( that you can send to me as I do not want to tear from my book), it is a light read but something that will make you smile at the insight Cyrus has about local train commuters.
“I take this train too” is a perfect book to read on a day you are not travelling in a local train or on the day you are travelling in train.
To buy the book you can directly click here to email Cyrus Daruwala
Publisher: Alok Nanda, FilterPress
Printed Price: Rs 575
Other books that I have written about
- The Bankster by Ravi Subramanian
- Hot Tea Across India by Rishad Saam Mehta
- Business Sutra by Devdutt Pattanaik
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