It's funny how some things recur across the generations. Like mangoes. OK - bear with me ...
Fully twenty-five years ago, when I was new as a BBC correspondent in Delhi and seeking to impress my colleagues with my Hindi, I declared: मैं आम हूं (me aam hoo). The response was smirks, giggles and at least in one case derisive laughter. I had intended to say that I was an ordinary guy - not someone from a privileged background. Instead I had declared: I'm a mango!
OK, so fast forward ... my daughter, a really good linguist, has started Hindi lessons. Well, her first proper Hindi lesson was yesterday - though she is already fairly OK in the language. This evening she asked me to give her a quick run down on Indian politics as we enter what will be an election year there.
I mentioned the Aam Admi Party
आम आदमी पार्टी - the insurgent anti-corruption party which won a startling landslide victory in local elections in Delhi a few years back. Aam Admi means 'common man' - a phrase made famous by the cartoonist R.K, Laxman. But as we have discovered. Aam also has another meaning -
"Um, the 'mango man' party? Really?" my daughter enquired.
It seems we have more in common than I thought.
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