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Friday, May 24, 2013

Role Modeling?

One year ago I was at the Tata Medical Center in Kolkata. My grandfather was not well.
As I was sitting in the waiting room, I saw a familiar face. She was my student from two years ago. I taught her English. There was the usual ‘Hi’ and ‘Hello’. She was studying in Kolkata and she was in the hospital because her stepmother was sick with cancer. As we went on talking her elder sister joined us and she introduced me. With my name she added, “… my sir who always talks about his wife whom I mentioned…” 
After saying what she said, Choden (my student) felt awkward or that was what I read on her face. But I thanked her for remembering me as a person who loves his wife (some students, I feel, think I am obsessed with my wife).

Now, two weeks ago thirteen teachers from my school attended the workshop on “Educating for GNH”. One of the pertinent reminders was on Role Modeling. They said, “Teachers are remembered not for what they taught but for how/what they were.” Now thinking about this line I feel I have been able to Role Model certain aspects of a happy man who loves his wife.

In the classroom whenever and whatever I chance on I talk about my wife. Once I was explaining ‘with held’. I told them it is the past tense of ‘hold’ and that I love holding my wife more than my boys. They giggled and I gave them a general observation; for most men/women their wife/husband become secondary after a baby is born. This should not be because it will be the wife or the husband who will grow old with you. Happiness begins at home. Unless I am happy at home I will never be happy in the school or teach them well. So, I told them that they should thank my wife if they like my teaching.  

This is my seventh year in teaching and I have continued to use my wife as a teaching aid in my lessons. I hope I will never get tired of talking about her.            

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

The Ghost

Picture by Botho, my sister
The sky from the window looked somber my father said. He had fallen asleep after a glass of ara on that Sunday afternoon. He was alone as we were at Thimphu that winter.  The room had become dark except for the shade of light that fell on the floor, which shone from the streetlight and the moon outside.

He stretched and got up to get out of bed. As he got up, a man was facing him standing in front of him in his bedroom. He could not make out the features. The room was dark. The man glared at him, they stood watching each other for some time. My father said all he felt at that moment was sheer cold fear. The hair at the back of his neck rose in bumps. His heart beat in his head and he could hear the beating wild and fast. Words choked in his throat and he couldn't speak. He said it was like an invisible hand throttling him as he gasped for air.  It lasted like it seemed for hours.
Slowly he tried to push himself out of bed and the man came closer. He then decided that it was it; he was going to face this form or what ever it was that was before him, be it a man or a demon.

He cursed at the man and flung himself to grab him only to hit the dressing mirror that was facing him.