Ashwini Devare has been a front-row spectator to various political developments and upheavals over the years. Born in Moscow at the height of the Cold War during her Indian Foreign Service(IFS) officer father's first posting, Ashwini has lived in various countries.
She was constantly playing the "new girl" in schools across US, Myanmar, Korea, and Switzerland as she moved across six countries in the first sixteen years of her life. At the same time, her nomadic childhood dabbled and dealt with historical events, through her diplomat father – from USA mired in the Vietnam War, death of Indian Prime Minister Lal Bahadur Shastri in Tashkent, to Sikkim in the midst of a pro-democracy movement that would overthrow the monarchy, India during turbulent times, and South Korea, where student demonstrations convulsed the country.
In her autobiography, "Lost at 15, Found at 50" launched at the American Club, Ashwini gives an interesting account of her life connecting these events. The memoir is an engaging, delightful read that offers rich insights into Ashwini’s nomadic life, that later, since 2002, found home on this sunny island in Southeast Asia, Singapore.
The book was unveiled by the High Commissioner of India to Singapore, Jawed Ashraf, and ex-diplomat Ambassador Krishnasamy Kesavapany. Ashwini is an ex-journalist who has worked with CTV News in the US, BBC Singapore, and CNBC India. Her first book, Batik Rain was released in 2014. A collection of short stories.
We caught up with the NRI author at the book launch to get a first-hand account on her second book, the process, and her takeaways. Watch the interview here: