Readers can be very kind, even if it is sad news they bring. Ray Pearce has just brought to my attention the death of Nigel Hankin, a COMPLETELY eccentric, gentle, likable old chap who won our hearts when we met him in India. Thanks Ray, I had missed it.
Nigel was a man who understood that those who not only found him but who persisted in unearthing him (never protesting) were those who wanted a different view of Delhi. Not the usual tourist routine but something of the real India. He took us into places of Delhi we would never have dreamed existed and we met people and saw things that are still vivid in my mind as when we walked “Nigel’s Delhi”. Testimony to his knowledge, and the love of the locals for him, was the fact that the most obscure, poverty stricken person we met, through to the more well to do spice traders, all knew Mr Nigel and warmly greeted him at every turn.
Posts about our time with Nigel include the one here about obscure architecture, visiting the crematorium, drinking tea in a part of Delhi I am sure most Indians in that city have never visited, and of course visiting the completely inane yet perfectly Indian Coronation Park. And here he is pictured with my wife taking a breather in the same Park, but in a post in which I reference the work he did with his own version of Hobson Jobson and which he was kind enough to sign for us.
Finally, the obituary in the Daily Telegraph which posted the sad news of his death but captured something of the rogue and eccentric in him.
Vale Nigel. Thanks for sharing what you could easily have kept to yourself.
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