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Hi, my name is Martanda.

I was born in the Matrimandir Camp in 1977. My father is Indian and my mother is French (she came to Auroville very long back!).
I studied in Auroville. I went straightaway to Kindergarten as there was no crèche at the time,and later went to Transition when it opened in 1985. Spent my adolescent days in Last School, and went to the Lycée Français in Pondicherry for one year. Then I joined After School where I followed the N.O.S. correspondence courses from Delhi. At the age of 18 I had the feeling that we were totally confined by the protected and closed environment of Auroville. I was fed up with my daily life and decided to leave Auroville for a while.


In 1998, my mother and I went to France for a family reunion, and that turned out to be the beginning of a long journey. I got a chance to stay longer than expected and worked hard for two months in the south of France, as a salad chef in a *** hotel! During the peak season there's a lot of work. After this, I jumped to making wine for the season. Having tasted the first few months in France, I wanted to stay even longer. There was absolutely no hair on my head prompting for returning to Auroville.

The Army

So then I was called by the French army to do my service! During that time I improved my French, acquired a driving license, made friends and traveled all over France for a good price (one of the advantages of being in the army)! In my ten months of service, I served as 'watchman' to guard the underground armory! (Want to know some secrets..?!)

Up north

When stepping down from the train coming from the sunny and relaxed South, I was hit by the 'black fashion', the sky high shoes and the mobile phones, an outstanding introduction to the North of France.. Everyone was ripping around so busy, not caring about the blue sky! After a few months I decided to return home, to Auroville, where I grew up in the trees and played marbles with the villagers!


Returning to Auroville in December 1999, I worked for months with Kireet on the check dam in the Utility canyon. At the time, there was no greater pleasure for me than to work with the people, in our own sweat! Inscribed in the dam is written, in Tamil and English, 'Every drop counts!'

Continuing the dream

Then, one fine day, I began to teach a group of girls' basketball from scratch. It is still happening today.. Jumped into a few other works here and there, looking for something to catch my frequency! At the moment, it is hard for me to start something on my own rather than follow the flow! Such is the case of many of us here in Auroville. After all we grew up in Auroville to continue the dream...

Contact: martandaauroville.org.in

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