Showing posts from November, 2022

Not The Jungle Book

In preparation for the twice postponed (because of Covid) trip to India Elaine and I had long planned, I read Kipling's The Jungle Book (Vols 1 & 2). Never read Kipling before, I have to admit. My reading was prompted because the location of the Mowgli stories in the book is precisely where we were headed: the forests of Madhya Pradesh in central India. Actually Kipling had never been there; though born in India, he was shipped back to England by his parents at the age of six to go to school, then returned to Northern India in his early 20s. He relied heavily on folk tales repeated by his father. It has to be said that, for all its merits and demerits (it's quite uneven but has some wonderful writing in parts), it is not a particularly accurate guide to the flora and fauna of Madhya Pradesh. It is of course quite unlike the Disney film. If you've seen that, or dare I say read the book, which is quite out of fashion, you will recognise some names of species. Baloo the b