The day started as usual. I went to the office, had breakfast and soon started with my tasks. As I had other priorities that day, I skipped checking my emails in the morning. After an hour or two, when I was talking to one of my colleagues (who happens to be my friend as well) asked me,
“Do you know that Vijay Bagade sir is retiring today?”
Of course, I knew he was about to retire but had no idea when.
“I don’t know. How do you know about this?”
“Check your email”
“Sure. I will” and I came to my desk to check the same. After scrolling down through a bunch of emails, there it was. For the first time, I was reading the email from someone who was about to retire. After reading his email (or a retirement note as one may call it), I was surprised! It was beautifully crafted with details. Every sentence, every word used, reflected its own value of the past 40 years of his service to the Tata Motors. Sophisticated and simple at the same time. Being inclined towards spirituality, I have read in one of the books that as one gains sufficient amount of experience, s/he needs fewer words to express. This was one of such examples. He expressed his time span of 40 years in just simple words – ‘Joined as Nobody, leaving as somebody’. A huge transformation, learning, experience of his complete service, expressed in one simple line!
Vijay Sir, as far as I knew, wasn’t from our commodity. Besides, I joined couple of months ago, which allowed me to meet him only once and that to be on the second day at my office during the formal introduction. It was 23rd of January, 2018. Sudhindra Sir was introducing me to the office colleagues. After he introduced to some of the colleagues, we came to the cubical of a manager, who seemed to be older than others.
“Meet Vijay Sir, who is one of the most senior persons in the office” as soon as Sudhindra sir said this, Vijay sir stood up. With a broad smile on his face, he welcomed and greeted me with a cordial handshake! I was astonished! I was enthralled by the sheer excitement. With new energy flowing through my veins, I gathered my response.
“Hello, Sir! I’m Gaurav”
“Great! From which college are you?” The second set of neurons was fired into my brain.
“Very good! Try to Learn as much as you can Gaurav! Best of luck!”
“Sure, sir I will” I tried to reply with all the enthusiasm I had.
This was all the communication I ever had with him. During all the time, he always seemed enthusiastic, even on the last day of his job.
Send off was arranged in the afternoon that day. We all gathered in the conference room, where everyone seated in the chairs around the table. When he arrived, everyone welcomed him with applause. After Sudhindra sir gave an introductory speech, everyone shared their emotions, gratitude, memories towards Vijay sir. After cutting the cake, he was felicitated with gifts, gifts worth remembering for a lifetime. The conference room was filled with the joy. Everyone was sharing their experiences, thoughts, laughing, ready to happily send him off of the ship he boarded long ago. He concluded the send-off. He seemed to be happily retiring from his job. In the end, we all hugged him and gave best wishes for his further life. His long journey of walking along, hand in hand for serving the Tata Motors came to halt on 28th February 2018.
Some people really become inspiration. Even though I met him only once, he influenced me! for a novice like me, this is a great experience to learn, to grow! And this is one of those many experiences that I will ever observe in my life ahead!