Monday, January 26, 2009

The day I met Ravi

Today I met Ravi. I know that the following questions will pop up in your mind:

Who Ravi?
Why I met him?
How the meeting happened?


To find out who Ravi is, you need to visit an old blog post of mine. The link to the same is pasted below:

http://vijitspeaks.blogspot.com/2008/11/ravi-smart-street-kid.html

I hope you have checked the following youtube videos too:

http://in.youtube.com/watch?v=6PrleqeCAPw
http://in.youtube.com/watch?v=-URtZfIgKAU
Now that you have figured out who Ravi is, I can proceed to answer the next question about the reason to meet him. I was always eager to meet him because I think he is an inspiration not only for kids of his age but also for grown ups. He learnt so many languages without having any formal education till date. He took efforts to learn foreign languages through his interaction with tourists from different parts of the world. He can sell his product in French, Iranian, Arabic, Japanese and many other languages. He is a perfect example of value addition. He sells hand fans made out of peacock feathers near Hanging Garden. He could have done that with his limited language skills. However, by taking efforts to learn foreign languages he did a big value addition to his business. By interacting with tourists in their own language he made an impression on them and thus his sales prospects increased. I wanted to meet him in person someday and I am very glad that I got to meet him today.

This meeting was made possible all thanks to Gayatri, my friend. She is doing MBA and one fine day she happened to go to Hanging Garden at Malabar hill along with her classmates. She had read my previous blog and was aware about Ravi. She saw him near Hanging Garden (also know as Sir Ferozshah Mehta garden) and informed me about it. Since then I was thinking that I should meet him.

Today I along with Gayatri went to Hanging Garden to meet him. We roamed around in the garden for a while but could not locate him. Then we stepped out of the garden and saw him sitting on the opposite side of the road with the peacock feather fans. We went to him and I told him that I wanted to buy the fan. Then I addressed him by his name (Ravi). There was no surprise whatsoever on his face. I asked him to tell how I could have figured out his name. His answer was that I must have figured it out from the internet. He is aware of his presence in the internet. From the conversation I realized that he still doesn’t go to school. He stays in Santacruz and has been coming to Hanging Garden since the age of 5 to sell stuff. He learnt everything at Hanging Garden. This garden has been both his workplace and school. I told him that he should go to school. He said that many have told him to and that he is planning to go to night school. I bought a peacock feather fan from him which will serve as a memento.
I hope and pray that Ravi does go to school because if he does he will make it big. I firmly believe that formal education combined with the confidence he has gained through his experience in sales would make him a great success story; an inspirational story for everyone to make note of.
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