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By Saroo Brierley

Saroo Brierley (born 1981) is an Indian-born Australian businessman who, at age five, was once separated from his organic mom. He used to be followed via an Australian couple, and 25 years later reunited along with his organic mom. His tale generated major overseas media recognition, specially in Australia and India.
An autobiographical account of his stories, some distance domestic, was once released in 2013 in Australia, published across the world in 2014, and tailored into the 2016 movie Lion, starring Dev Patel as Saroo and Nicole Kidman as his adoptive mom, Sue Brierley.

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I’m not sure if she understands, but this time she speaks, in hesitant English. “People . . not live here . . today,” she says. Although she is only confirming what I know, to hear her say it aloud hits me hard. I feel dizzy. I’m left standing there in front of her, unable to move. I’ve always known that even if I managed to find my way back here, my family might have moved. Even in my short time with them, they had moved here from another place. Poor people often don’t have much say in where they live, and my mother used to have to take whatever work she could get.

Its images of the little boy trying to survive alone in a sprawling city, in the hope of returning to his mother, brought back disturbing memories so sharply that I wept in the dark cinema. After that, my parents only took me to fun Bollywood-style movies. Even sad music of any kind (though particularly classical) could set off emotional memories, since in India I had often heard music emanating from other people’s radios. Seeing or hearing babies cry also affected me strongly, probably because of memories of my little sister, Shekila.

There was a train at the platform where we’d got off, with its carriage door open, but I didn’t know if it was the same one, or how long I’d been asleep. I’ve often wondered exactly what I was thinking right then. I was still half-asleep and I remember being unnerved by finding myself at the station alone at night. My thoughts were muddled. Guddu wasn’t around, but he’d said he wasn’t going far—maybe he’d got back on the train? I shuffled over and climbed the boarding stairs to have a look. I have a memory of seeing some people asleep on board and stepping back down from the carriage, worried that if they woke up, they would call the conductor.

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A Long Way Home by Saroo Brierley

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