For almost a century, Kuttiyamma’s daily routine had been much the same. Rising early at home in the village of Thiruvanchoor in Kerala, the 104-year-old would begin her day’s work of cooking, cleaning and feeding the cows and chickens. But now, every morning, there’s something new to get up for. She eagerly awaits the paperboy to deliver Malayala Manorama, the local newspaper.
For two hours, she buries herself reading the news and keeping herself informed about what’s going on in the world. But it is only in recent months that she has been able to fulfil this dream of hers – in April, Kuttiyamma finally began to learn to read. “I was always curious about what was happening around the world,” she said. “On many occasions I regretted my inability to read newspapers and I used to plead with the younger generations at home to read out newspapers to me. I always wanted to write my name and address.”