Having been in professional work environments for a decade and half, I pondered over the key elements that built my career. One element that stays relevant at all times is – the English language, with its usage (both written and verbal) for business communication.
When I look back to see how I acquired this element, one name comes up without any hesitation – “Vijayabalan Sir“. Yes, Vijayabalan Sir was my English teacher during my 6th and 7th grade classes in a well-known school at Cuddalore. He laid a solid foundation on written English. While he’d stick to the framework prescribed by the syllabus, he’d go out of the box to give us written assignments (i.e he’d not stick to the prescribed text book). He used to provide examples and assignments from various English books of higher standards. It has been 26 years since I met him last, but his teaching on “Direct speech and Indirect speech” is still afresh in my memories. When someone says that my English is good, the immediate name that pops up in my mind is “Vijayabalan Sir”. I didn’t get a chance to learn English from someone in the likes of Vijayabalan Sir from my 8th grade to 10th grade. However, I was able to stay afloat without distraction during that time period, thanks to the foundation set by him.
During my 11th and 12th grades, I had an opportunity to learn English from Kothandaraman Sir (whom we call “R.K Sir“) in a renowned school at Trichy. His command over the language, his witty narrative style and his clarifications for questions outside the syllabus (I remember asking him the meaning for “Camaraderie” after reading a news item on Indian cricket team’s celebration over Kapildev’s record breaking wicket) kept the interests in the language alive. In an era of the languages being considered low-profile due to the importance attached to “Maths, Physics, Chemistry, Biology/Computer Science”, he made an everlasting imprint.
In case Vijayabalan Sir and R.K Sir happen to read this post – Sirs, I’m always indebted to you for that evergreen, strong foundation.
Happy Teachers Day…