WHEN MARISSA BRONFMAN ran into her Grade 12 English teacher, Freny Mistry, at the Giller Prize awards in Toronto, the Branksome Hall grad couldn’t have guessed the impact the impromptu reunion would have on her life. Mistry, married to much-lauded Canadian author Rohinton Mistry, suggested her former pupil, now a successful freelance writer and Huffington Post contributor,join her for lunch at Caffe Doria. Over a shared salad and vegetable panini, Mistry encouraged Bronfman to use her craft — her ability to weave facts and emotions into stories — for a cause that would bring her several oceans away from home. A few months later, Bronfman was on an airplane, heading to India.
Having lived in Vancouver, Whistler, Montreal (she attended McGill University) and New York City after graduating from Branksome, the idea of leaving everything behind her didn’t phase Bronfman. She’d interned at NBC Universal, written for the Huffington Post (a gig she was able to continue even after she moved back to Toronto last September), and she’d freelanced for a number of reputable publications. So the idea of chasing a story didn’t deter her,either. Over the course of a month, Bronfman toured northern India, wrote about her experiences and witnessed the launch of a few overseas programs for World Literacy of Canada (the non-profit organization her English teacher suggested she write about during that fateful lunch meeting).
Upon Bronfman’s arrival back in Toronto, the 23-year-old vowed to return to India. She enjoyed covering style and entertainment events in New York, L.A. and Toronto, but she wanted to use her words elsewhere. “I’m going to live in India indefinitely,” says Bronfman, who’ll move in October.“ Working as a writer is much more exciting in a place like India. I love the people, the places, the culture — and I get to be a part of a burgeoning industry.”
Bronfman has already secured employment with a luxury travel company in Mumbai; she’ll be working on their website and producing video content,too. She’ll remain a contributor with the Huffington Post. Until October, you’ll find Bronfman hanging out in Yorkville (where she currently lives) with Roxy, her black-and-gold toy Pomeranian. “She’s coming with me,” Bronfman assures me. "I wouldn’t move anywhere without her.”
Huffington Post Writer