November 04, 2010

Record your stories

Did Mylaporeans stick to Mylapore when it came to shopping at Deepavali time or did they go to China Bazaar and Rattan Bazaar?

Who were the big and popular names among neighbourhood shops?

What was the atmosphere at home when the seniors and the young, relatives and friends gathered to make sweets and snacks?

Times like festivals are times when you can indulge in lots of social history.

And record it if one can, simply because much of it does not get into print or go online and because much of these records will die with the passing away of every generation.

At our newspapers we do make an attempt to record memories of people who have great stories to share. These efforts are few and far between because there are countless stories and many story-tellers but very few people who volunteer to document them.

I pause for a few seconds when I run through the Obituary notices of very senior and colourful personalities that reach our desk for publication. We have lost another set of stories that this man or woman may have shared had we had a long conversation . . .

Is it important to record the experiences of people who used trams and state-run transport buses in the past and of major events at school campuses?

Is it useful to collect photos of social events like weddings and grihapravesams that took place in 1960s and to save the annual reports of leading organisations?

Everything that are troves of stories of our past is important.

It is easy now to document all this in the age of technology. But we volunteers.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Dear Editor,

It will be great if you can include columns in Mylapore Times that are related to the news items you cover.

For instance, during Navaratri season, you could have included articles along with pictures. There are a lot of NRI s in the Mylapore area who could probably share the experiences in celebrating such events abroad and back in India.

I'm sure the student reporters can do this effectively if you assign them projects. I believe they are very creative, energetic and have more ideas.

Thank you and Good Luck.