Friday, July 15, 2011

A tribute to my teachers

I'm blessed to have met VVNC as a teacher. This person has no obligation or motivation whatsoever to treat me with so much kindness and patience. Suddenly out of the blue, he is entrusted with a protege who takes everything too literally, is slow to understand jokes, asks stupid questions and only sucks more oxygen out of the room. Truth be told, this humble self is not even a protege; because with the level of skills she's got, she's just anyone from the high street. Deep down, I know how blessed I am, how God has brought me under the supervision of one of his angels on Earth. I could detect the genuineness of VVNC's character when:

1. He opened the door for me the first day I came to the office, brought me to  my seat, spammed me with office supplies and showed me the loo. When I was by myself later on in the week, I realized that not everyone would immediately show you the loo! So that was very thoughtful of him. 
2. He walked over the office to find me the correct colour printer when I printed from the wrong one.
3. He asked his colleagues from Amsterdam and Paris to send me notes or information to help me with my research over a conference call. He also ingrained in me a sense of self-worth by noting how important my paper was, when in fact I knew that it probably was just something assigned to me to fill up my time. But just because he took the effort to build my confidence, I had to do my work well. 
4. He sent me an email saying, '95% perfect!' on my silly draft. He also kept eyeing my monitor to make sure I was progressing with work and not slacking away. 
5. He put a smile on my face by saying how he's already loving my work that's not even remotely coherent. 
6. He asked if I wanted a coffee everytime he went out to get one. 
7. He ate all of my Min Chiang kueh when no one else wanted to. 
8. He pushed me slightly to the front so I could be closer to the sales people during their meeting when I was feeling too timid. I later met my colleague from Amsterdam too, who did the same thing to me. They must have noticed how scared I was. 
9. He sent me emails with all sorts of information that could assist me in my learning.
10. He asked someone to email me a spreadsheet with the names of clients all listed down, so I wouldn't have to do it all by myself all over again. 
11. He asked me if I would like to attend one of the conferences between a client and a professor. 
12. He told me about his life and his hopes and dreams, how he loves developing other people. He's a natural teacher, born as one I would say. 
13. He advised me not to be only motivated by money, because I'd never ever be truly happy. 
14. He copied me into an email this morning to tell me he'd have some flooding problems at home and would be late to work. Who else would bother doing that just for a temp? 

He didn't have to do any of these, surely. I don't know why God has been so kind to me. I met an amazing supervisor and VVNC. Both of them have done so much for me in such a little space of time, unconditionally. Their unselfishness leads me to believe that there is still hope in this harsh world. I've met too many people who only does things that would benefit them. Somehow, I find myself very much in that group of people. God is telling me to turn away from all that, to go back to where the human heart can thrive and beat for other people. Both VVNC and boss have done more than is required of them while I'm at their desk, for nothing extra. I'm just truly humbled by all of this.

I remember how last summer, it was weeks before I got internet access, and a work laptop. I was neglected and treated with condescension and at one point, even made into a scapegoat by my supervisor. Contrasting these two experiences, I am grateful that I have a chance to meet kinder people now.  

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