On World Book Day, meet the man who keeps reading under a tree
Kozhikode: A tree at Mambatta here is called as ‘Pushpamaram’ (meaning flower tree) by the locals. It is not because the tree blooms always, but due to a person named Pushpan who always sat beneath it and kept reading books.
Mambatta native Pushpan retired as master driller from groundwater department. He was not a habitual reader from childhood. He had read only a few books taken from the school library as suggested by his teachers. But later, he started reading detective novels.
Gradually, Pushpan started taking books by prominent writers like SK Pottekkatt, Thakazhi, Kakkanadan and M Mukundan. With this, reading became a habit for him. He used to sit under a tree near the temple in their locality for reading. He was attracted to the pleasant and peaceful atmosphere there.
“Every book shows us very different lives and experiences which we may not have seen in our real life. We would feel the pain and stress in the stories. The pleasure it gives makes reading an addiction,” Pushpan opined.
Even when he was working, Pushpan continued his habit of reading. He also maintains a vegetable farm and fish farm. However, he does not go to the tree nowadays. As the road is crowded, people disturb him with questions while reading books.
Pushpan reads books in his home library, those taken from public libraries and the ones given by his friends. His friend Grow Vasu also gives him books to read. Pushpan’s wife Baby helps him find the articles which he missed in periodicals. Their daughters Sivani and Volga also encourage him to keep reading.