Run, Milind, Run

Run, Milind, Run
Milind Soman pens down his memoir ,

There is more than what meets the eye

Sharmistha Chaudhuri
March 16 , 2020
02 Min Read

The fact that it’s been 25 years since the now iconic ‘Made in India’ video came out gave me quite a jolt. Has it been that long? I remember the song by Alisha Chinai on Channel V where she starred as a princess searching for her prince charming and finally found one that came in a wooden crate stamped with the words ‘Made in India’. Those “mere 53 seconds, give or take a couple” was my first encounter with Milind Soman, that turned him “from a supermodel into something way bigger—a star.”

In his newly-published eponymous book, Soman bares it all (well, not literally). I’ll be honest; I haven’t followed his modelling or acting career much (I was too young in 1995 when the Tuff ad came out and I barely watch films) but have read about his running barefoot on roads. This book gives a glimpse into Soman’s early ‘misfit’ life, his complicated relationship with his father, the love for his mother and sisters, the love for fitness and the start of Pinkathon, swimming, which was ‘never a passion’ (he was the Indian Men’s 100m breaststroke champion in 1984 but didn’t make the Seoul Games squad two years later due to politics), the ability to quit addictions, and his personal life (his recent marriage to a much younger Ankita Konwar has been much publicised).

Each page felt like an honest read with nuggets of interesting bits. I didn’t imagine him to be a Star Trek fan, or a voracious Enid Blyton reader. I laughed at the prediction told to his Aai (mother) decades ago that ‘it was my destiny to be surrounded by women’. Heck, the fact that Soman ran his first half marathon at the age of 37 is not only inspiring but has made me guilty of wasting my Cult membership! And the central theme of the book that revolves around his first 42-kilometre in January 2009 in Mumbai, which was agonising to say the least, which he was running for his friend Vinod who had passed away some weeks ago, is incredibly heartwarming.

The best way to describe Soman’s book is that it’s frank. He talks of the past and what he looks forward to in the future (there are plans of the Double Ironman Triathlon and of summiting Everest). It leaves it at what he’s said so well, ‘all we can do is keep moving’. Indeed.

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