Teachers’ Day

Yesterday was Teachers’ Day. Can’t remember how we celebrated it as kids (if it did exist then!) but of course there are some teachers who stand out in my memory. Recently when a magazine asked for a quote on my favourite teacher, I immediately thought of Mother Ositha. It’s funny when you look back and think of the people who have helped you along the way,how vivid those memories are. I remember how all the excitement of going to boarding school evaporated two minutes after my mother left and a deluge of tears swamped me. As I stood with my face against a handy wall and howled my heart out, a warm hand gently pried me away. I don’t know how I found myself in the midst of a game and it was miraculous how soon I was skipping around, my tears totally forgotten. As luck would have it, she turned out to be my class teacher and soon with her almost imperceptible encouragement I found myself climbing the class list of seven year old achievers. Interesting that my highest marks then were in composition, but I’m sure Mother Ositha had something to do with it.
Another teacher I remember for a different reason is Mrs. Hollow, who taught us in the 10th and 11th standard. An old school type, deaf as a post, she certainly did not spare the rod! A bad mood was enough reason to lambaste us! On the flip side she was a stickler for good writing and wouldn’t allow us to read anything but the classics. So I offer fervent thanks to Ma’am Hollow too–not for the pastings but for helping me to develop a style.

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