Racket Boy – An autobiography by Philip George

Backshadowing India: Unplanned Adventures!


Arriving at 2 am I was pleased to find the VW Polo GT TSI, which I’d specially requested with the car rental company, waiting for me at the Trivandrum station, although a red instead of white vehicle would’ve been better! It wasn’t quite Golf GTI but the Polo would do for my back shadowing of Kerala, the land of my ancestors. Driving in India requires exceptional manoeuvring skills and patience, a challenge I relish. My familiarity with Kerala serves as an advantage of course.

On the first Sunday, I visited St. George’s Syrian Church at Spencer’s Junction, a place my mother frequented during her years in Trivandrum, up until her passing. Following church, I made a visit to my mother’s grave in nearby Pattoor, which reminded me of the unfortunate circumstances that led to her resting almost a hundred miles away from her husband’s Kalayil family burial ground in the Orthodox Syrian Church in Kozhencherry Thekkemala, Pathanamthitta, my next destination.

My connection to Kerala had substantially waned following my mother’s demise, but Racket Boy has changed all that. Racket Boy – Where’s My Country has certainly rekindled old emotions!

* The church in the picture is the Mar Beshanania Syrian Orthodox Church, in Thekkemala (Kozhencherry), frequented by Philip George’s Kalayil family. The church’s foundation was laid by St. Gregorios of Parumala (1897), the first person of Indian origin to be canonised as saint.

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