This one is another anecdote from my trip to Mysore last month.
I met this 50 something gentleman who teaches in the engineering college in Mysore. Nothing out of the ordinary right? A professor earning his living in the sleepy town of Mysore...now what really took me away was, when I asked him his background and where he had studied from. His reply really surprised me, coz we don't really meet people like him anymore these days...at least not in our generation.
This gentleman had done his engineering from the prestigious IIT and had even earned his PHD from IIT and had done some commendable research in his subject area. Guys, this chap was pure unadulterated brain! And after all this all he wanted to do was live in sleepy Mysore with his wife, and share his knowledge with young enthusiastic minds. For some of us, this may seem very illogical or impractical, or just not being in step with the world and times. But for him this was life and that too the kind he wanted! Simple. Who are we to judge?
But, as soon as we got out of that place, I turned to my husband and said - what the heck is he doing here? I mean the world is out there for him! I wondered what really fascinated him about his middle class life, a nagging wife, a sleepy town, his lifestyle, his struggle to build a house, everyday challenges of commuting on public transport?? I mean aren't those the very things that all of us want to escape and so we go for 'bigger' and 'better' things in life?
That set me thinking...really how many of us today, would choose a relatively unknown, quiet, sober life for ourself, when we could have the world at our feet. When armed with the best qualifications and brain we could have the best opportunites for us anywhere in the world, then why would you or me ever choose to leave the worldy things and live a quiet life in a sleepy little town? How many of us would leave a good flashy, globe trotting lifestyle, money making opportunites and choose a mundane life full of struggle?
Well, maybe a lot needs to be said about the younger generation and their aspirations. Maybe we need to revisit our whole value system today and ask what drives us and why? At what point did we take a different direction form our predecessors? Yes, the world is a different place today than it was a few years ago, but our basics are still the same. But, still such people as the professor exist and proudly chose the life they want and like.