Teacher’s Day/ Someone that changed your life

September 4 is Teacher’s Day in India. Wish every teacher a very Happy Teacher’s Day celebration and may they continue to enlighten us with life long learning and wisdom. I am also linking this post to 30 Day Challenges in August-I know I am running late. But that’s the real fun to keep writing. It’s Day 7 for me where I am writing on ‘Someone that changed your life.’ I am paying a special tribute on Teacher’s Day to not one but two people, first is my Philosophy teacher and second one, my first mentor at work.

Here’s the link:



Day 7: Someone that changed your life

There are some people who enter your life to give you meaning and significance to your existence as a human being. They offer a certain perspective and help you discover the untapped potential that lie dormant inside or, for that matter, you blatantly ignored. Today, I choose to right about two such people in my life. September 4 is Teacher’s Day. Here linking the post to Teacher’s Day.

Professor Joseph Lobo has been my Philosophy Teacher at Fergusson College during my under grads for two years. I’ve always been a very shy person, wary to give my opinion about things for the fear of being judged by people, scared with the epic line ‘Log kya Sochenge’ (What will people think?)’ Professor’s Philosophy topics, ranging from Ethics to sexuality and religion, has always been animated discussions, a far cry from the classic, the teacher speaks and the students sit like mute spectators, taking notes and listening.

Professor made sure that each one of us would take a stand on issues, Yes or No and one thing I really loved about his lectures when he would ask us the percentage to which we would agree with the different school of thoughts or Philosophers’ on different issues. I remember once I was hesitant to speak about something and Sir said, ‘Vishal! You need to speak. Why are you acting like the Minister of External Affairs or a diplomat?”

I moved to Mumbai after my under-grads in Pune and I came back for a party held for Lobo Sir’s retirement. He was so happy when he saw me, his voice choked with emotion. I became so happy and it touched my heart when I saw Sir’s reaction. Before leaving for Pune, I called Sir to thank him, telling him, ‘Whatever little I have achieved Sir is because of you. You gave me perspective in life.’ His words still ring true in my ears, “Vishal! Always be yourself in life.” I always strive to live up to the priceless and timeless advice. I never try to be someone else.


Bosses can be our philosopher, guide and friend who help us explore our hidden potential and can see things in us that we, ourselves, may not pay heed to. I had such a boss when I first joined a newspaper as a sub-editor and reporter. In the start, I struggled a lot and accumulated blunders over blunders at work. Kuheli Ma’am is such a tough task master. The first few months at work were the toughest I’ve gone through and there is no denying that I wanted to leave, ridiculously reasoning that I am not probably made for this job. But, slowly things started to change for better and, after a year, I was shifted from the desk to reporting.

It’s been a great learning experience working under Ma’am, my mentor, who saw the potential in me to do the reporting job. As ironical as it may sound, I was not aware that my real potential lies as a journalist considering that I am a person who like the human interaction, is a great listener and observer of things around me. I never thought in my life that I’ll be a journalist but Ma’am channeled my energy where my core strength lies. If today, I am able to write for various publications as a freelancer and journalist, the whole credit goes to Ma’am who helped me find my way and defined my career as a young person. True calling in life may be the design of someone else who perhaps saw things that we may be ignorant of. How true!

I was always a very confused person in life, not knowing what I want to do with life but joined The Independent and working under my first boss, showed me the path, She is a mentor is very tough but is very encouraging when you work hard as a person. That’s what I like with the mentor who gave me invaluable inputs about my career and played a great role to get my career back on track. I respect her a lot as a person who has a top-notch level in journalism who would magically solve things we would view as insurmountable task.

Kuheli Ma’am has been a great teacher who showed me the way. How I wish we could work together under her able guidance to learn more stuffs about journalism.






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