20 done, 80 to go…. Numbers remind me of Mathematics and that automatically reminds me of my Mathematics teacher, Vatsala Rajamani. An awesome lady who would cycle to school decades ago when Bangalore was truly a garden city. A CBZ student who taught mathematics. It didn’t add up. It was in our 10th Std that the mystery was solved. On the brink of graduating high school and moving to college was a very exciting prospect. No uniforms, no restrictions, can carry books in funky bags… Oooh !!
Ma’am, your advice was never to be forgotten- my first management lesson- “Don’t opt for subjects or streams just because you don’t want to lose a friend or because your best friend has chosen Commerce, Science, Arts stream. Choose the subject you like and enjoy, as friends will come and go in your life but your happiness lies in what you like to do”
And the mystery was solved with a story she narrated. “My love for mathematics was really strong, so much that I thrived in cracking the toughest of problems. After high school I opted for Chemistry, Botany, Zoology combination only because my best friend had chosen that stream. I was unhappy throughout with no mathematics in my life. I survived the course, graduated with flying colors but without passion for what I learnt. ”
This stayed with me through my life and at every stage of adding a new friend and losing touch with an old one, I remember Vatsala Miss. Ultimately Ma’am did come back to being a mathematics person and an awesome good one at that. She is now the Principal of a leading and old school of Bangalore. I need to make time to visit this lady who gave me my first management lesson.
Ma’am, my respects to you. You are in my thoughts always!
A hand painted batik in pure silk from Kolkota, and some junk jewellery from one of the many crafts expo at CKP