Welcome Speech

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THE SKV GAZETTE
I am a little surprised at how a person
like me, a person who has loved each
and every inch of this stage, be so
hesitant to come up here and speak.
What I am about to do is absolutely
fatal. I am here to deliver my
farewell speech. It has taken a little
time for this fact to dawn on my
senses. The fact that this speech has
to sum up just one thought: SKV, I'm
going to miss you. It has left my
heart wrenched. I really don't want
to do this!
Instead, I'll tell you a story. And as
usual, as is a custom, my scripts, my
stories always have me in the lead
role. This story is no exception. The
only difference is that it wasn't
written by me. It is a creation of the
Almighty that I treasure and share
whenever I can.
Flashback to the year I was in class
VII. It's the Hindi period. Every girl
reads aloud a paragraph from the
text and now…..it's my turn. Manju
di and the whole class is coaxing me
to speak. And I stand there, choking
on the words, dumb in silence. No
words come out. Cut to class
VIII….. it's Hindi period again and
the scene is played out again. Cut to
class IX……… it's Saurabh di's
class. I want to speak this time,
really, but if and only if the words I
read in the book in front of me would
come out of my mouth. And at last,
“Yu…..yu….yu….yudhi……shtrrr
r r a n . . . n … . n . . . n e
Du...Du.Dusashana s...S…se
o.k.…k…kaha…k.k.k...Ke…”
That was me three years ago. This is
me today. Funny? I assure you that at
that time there was nothing funny
about it.
No matter what I say in the next few
minutes, nothing will sum up even a
fraction of how much I owe this
institution.
Here I lost my false sense of
FAREWELL SPEECH
proportion which was in, of and about
the protected army kind of
upbringing I had had. I had never
tasted 'civil life'. I had this vague
sense of vanity about myself and my
type of school. I had already changed
12 schools and the thought that my
next school was some sort of
vidyalaya……Kanya Vidyalaya to be
precise dumped my vanity into the
deep dungeons of distress.
Here I was at the gates of SKV very
confident that I was going to make a
mark here because I was the best. I
repeat I had a vague sense of vanity. It
didn't take me much time to realize I
was wrong, terribly wrong. This
school flung at me such standards of
sports, cultural and academic
excellence that it took me years to
stabilize and adjust to match the
standards.
In the bargain I misplaced my
confidence and couldn't relocate it for
the next three years. In these three
years I witnessed what were possibly
the darkest days of my life. I couldn't
speak a single sentence without
stammering. I knew I had the ability
to do a lot of other things but
somehow things always seemed to
boil down to my being rejected
because of my speech impediment. It
was a dark cloud that refused to
budge. No matter what I did, how
much I tried, the more I tried to prove
myself, the more I stammered. I
blamed everybody around me for it. I
fooled myself and lied to myself.
People laughed at me and they poked
fun at me.
Then one day I realized that if I don't
speak unless necessary, I won't be a
joke. So I started keeping quiet.
Instead of making myself a joke I
started observing. Observing,
everything around me. It was this
very opportunity that SKV gave me.
No other institution could have.
I realized that one's problems are as
big as one perceives them to be. SKV
taught me to see my faults; it gave
me opportunities to mend them. It
taught me to think, to dream, and to
pursue my dreams. It has taught me
to trust myself, pick myself up
whenever I went wrong and failed. It
has taught me then to try harder to
make things work just as I dreamt.
This institution has taught me the
power of silence. This institution has
taught me to succeed.
When I say 'this institution', I mean
the head of the institution, the
teachers, the staff; the gardens where
I...
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