Slice of Life

Little did I know yesterday that I would be teaching 4 local kids English this morning. Had I known earlier how dingy and cramped for space the ‘classroom’ was, or that it was loaded with computers old enough to be collector’s items, or that my Spoken English ‘batch’ included two tiny school kids, I probably wouldn’t have gone.

When I did go, and when the class did start, I realized even as I was teaching, that this was an experience I would cherish. Don’t we like it in movies when the protagonist skips office, decides to take a day off from his regular life and do something he’s never done before? Don’t we all love that idea, though we secretly console ourselves that such things happen best only in films? Well, apparently, it doesn’t. You don’t need to be a fictional character to cut yourself out from monotony and grab a slice of life. Not always. Sometimes, life does throw that slice right in front of you, it is upto you to stop, walk back, pick it up, and bite in.

I did this morning. I decided it was okay to go to office a little late, and besides, reviving my teaching skills a little bit would only help. And I met two incredibly charming young school kids, whose parents (one of them doesn’t have a father) clean homes and sell bangles to keep the kids educated. And two other simple young girls, who just passed out of school, and were waiting to grow up and get famous.

For these kids, I donned the hat of a talkative friendly confidant and teacher today, shared their jokes, language fears, saw the gleam of attention in their eyes, and left them with a simple lesson that I hope is etched well in their memory.

And thus, on a beautiful green post-shower morning, when the mud was still smelling of sweet moistness, I grabbed a slice of life, whose taste will linger for a long time.

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