Dreams Hope Destiny

A Dialogue with a Zealous Outlander

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He walked into the restaurant named “Majestic Indian Veg & Non-Veg restaurant”.  A very small & cramped not-so-tidy place. He took a table in the corner, looked around and found me, alone, composed, lost in the state of tranquility.

Mr. M: Excuse me, Are you alone?

I: Halloww!! Yes..  *smiles*

Mr. M: Would you mind if I join you? (In a soft & slow accent)

I: Yes, Please. I’m glad to see you! (I looked at his backpack) Are you travelling somewhere?

Mr. M: Yes, I am going to Gokarna.

I: (totally surprised to know that the foreigners also visit Gokarna beach? What’s there?).  Where do you come from?

Mr. M: I come from Germany.

I:  And what are you doing here?

Mr. M: I teach. I teach English to children  in a village school, further from Mysore. Its a very small village named Mirle.  I work here for service &  no pay. I don’t earn money here.

I: *Surprised, thrilled, quizzical looks*  Sounds wonderful! How did you end up there?

Mr. M: Through a missionary. We were given a list of Countries to choose. I chose India & I love it.

I:  Where do you live here?

Mr. M: I live with an Indian family in the village. They provide food & shelter to me. A very good family. In fact, I love my village. Everybody is so friendly. They invite me for tea, to dinner, to play. I have many friends. I love the school too. Its a great job!

I: Wow! I can see that you love what you’re doing. But, It must be difficult for you. Are you able to adjust with the weather, food, languages, culture?

Mr. M: I totally love the food here. So many different varieties. I am here since last 7 months. We were taught a little bit of Kannada language because the village kids don’t understand English at all.  The village is very beautiful. We live so close to the nature. I don’t like the city life.

I: Doesn’t the school pay you for the Job?

Mr. M: You see, I do not have complete qualifications. I haven’t completed my Education. I am only 19. I wanted to do a service to the needy world. So I took this up for a year. One year of service commitment without earning any money for it. The school gave me an opportunity to do so. Its such an amazing experience. We are a group of Germans here. Some of us work for the orphanages, old age homes and some of us teach the Children.

I:  How delightful! I’m touched by the passion. And what are your next plans?

Mr. M: After I finish one year, I’d go back to Germany to complete my graduation and post-graduation. After that I will be doing my PhD. I have a long way to go, I have lots to do, for my career. During this one year, the people belonging to my age group are busy at the peak of setting up their career, competing  to get admissions in the best universities, choosing their field of study. But, I took a year off for social service. I have another 30 to 40 years for a job & making money, but now when I have the energy, I want to serve the world.

I: Do you like teaching? Do you see yourself being a teacher/professor?

Mr. M: Well, No. I do not want to be a teacher for my profession. I like auto mobiles design. I will be taking up that line after I go back to Germany.

I: Well, I appreciate that you devoted an important year of your life to service. Its a wonderful experience. And I’m quite surprised that you were allowed to do so!

Mr. M: Right. My mother did not like the idea. But my Dad supported me. He told me. Go, explore the world. See, what life is,  beyond where you are. I’m thankful. I’m very happy and I have no regrets for giving away my important year to the world that needed it more than me.

*** We ordered food together, I was also surprised to see him eat food the Indian style. ***

Mr. M: You seem to be friendly and kind. I’m happy to meet you.

I: I am happy to meet you too. Well, You are about 8 yrs younger to me, and I’m impressed by the work that you are doing. There are ample opportunities in our Country and not many of us pay attention to it.

Mr. M: Are you not worried to talk to me because you are not married to me?

I: *Confused Smile* Worried? Ah! Not at all.. You are not scary 😉

Mr. M: *cute smile* I asked because, in the village the girls don’t talk to the men who are strangers. I also learnt that they do not like love marriages, they only do arranged marriages.  So initially, I was worried to hello you, thinking you might take me wrong.

I laughed to myself.

It was the time for us to leave, we waved each other Good-Bye. I still continued laughing.

What a wonderful lad!

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8 thoughts on “A Dialogue with a Zealous Outlander

  1. OK, Sonali, this is a wonderful dialogue. Thank you so much for sharing it! How fascinating! By the way, what IS the Indian style of eating? It is fascinating to read about how he came to be in your country–and to imagine what it would be like to listen in on your conversation.

  2. Wonderful encounter and exchange ! Like Kathy, I am also grateful that you shared it with us. This is a strange coincidence, sonali, because I just finished reading a book written by a friend and member of the American Peace Corps in Central Africa, Bonnie Lee Black. She chose to spend two years in a small town of Gabon teaching women about nutrition, cooking, health, prevention of illness and more. Her book “How to Cook a Crocodile” is a well worth reading memoir with simple and tasty recipes. And now, you shared this experience with this German young man. How great !

    • I’d grab the book soon, sounds so interesting. Isa, you are always aware of some of the wonderful books, worth-reading. I love the coincidences of curious minds. Thank you 🙂

  3. What an interesting encounter! I admire the young man’s curiosity and friendliness and your willingness to ask him so many questions about his plans. Did you exchange addresses? There are so many wonderful people on this planet, looking to widen their horizons in a variety of different ways.

    • Yes Barbara, I was really curious to know, and if only I had more time to continue the conversations.. Well, wonderful people do exist. Sometimes, an eye catches the right people. I truly admire the little boys passion. And yes, we exchanged our contacts.. haven’t been able to catch up though.

  4. A delightful dialogue, and really an interesting encounter. Thanks for sharing this moment with us.

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