Thursday, January 3, 2013

First Day of the Rest of my Life - Retiring

I handed over the key and completed various formalities. I will no longer be working(teaching) even part time. It is a relief though with a little disappointment of ending on failure.

The primary reason for quitting was the risk of driving 50KM each way to IIT Ropar from Chandigarh and I do not think one can regard fear of driving on Indian roads as irrational - unlike the fear of radiation making Japanese children fat.

The risk has to commensurate to the reward and the reward was not sufficient. For my courses, very few students gave feedback which was quite positive and said that they learnt a lot. However, my perception was that these students would have learnt anyway and I am not sure I made any impact on the rest. They remained indifferent.

On the other hand, at an IIT, I could experiment. Each semester I tried something different which by the end of the semester left me dissatisfied. However, each disappointment gave rise to ideas which I could try in the next semester. Hence, had Ropar been closer to Chandigarh, I would have continued the experiments even if the results continued to disappoint. May be one day I would have found the right combination by which the students would have learnt instead of me.

Who knows, I may get bored with retired life and then what next?

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