Other opportunities – Guru turns businessman

Retired school teachers Shiu Dayal with wife Dayal Wati at their house in Labasa. Picture: SERAFINA SILAITOGA

HE may have retired from teaching but that has not deterred Shiu Dayal from earning an income through other opportunities.

Now a businessman and farmer, the Labasa grandpa, who started teaching in 1963, believes he has played his part well in the teaching fraternity.

“I taught for 37 years and I enjoyed my service as a primary schoolteacher, teaching in schools around Macuata,” he said.

“I never taught in any schools based in Viti Levu and I don’t know why. But one thing I know is that I enjoyed my years as a schoolteacher.

“It taught me a lot about children and understanding the different background they come from.”

This, he said was also a challenge.

“It was not easy because our purpose as teachers in school was to help every child achieve their dreams and we needed to guide them through in school,” Mr Dayal said.

“But the culture and respect children had for teachers in those days helped ease the load of work compared with what teachers face today.

“I see a big difference between our days of teaching and what teachers face today and I know it’s not easy.”

In his days of teaching, Mr Dayal said students would easily obey, respect and never talked back to teachers.

“It’s very different today but I am glad that after I retired, I didn’t just stay home. I started my own business through the help of my son who lives in Australia,” he said.

“We started the company ‘Comp City’ and we sell all types of gadgets and the business is doing well.

“But it tells me that the generation today is into all these sophisticated items and technology and this includes the primary and secondary school students.”

Observing this interesting fact, Mr Dayal said it was equally important for the younger generation to keep intact with their culture and mother nature.

“Not everything revolves around technology, although most things do, I still believe we need to keep our children and grandchildren in touch with their culture and mother nature,” he said.

“That is why I keep farming vegetables and sell it from the shop. This farm work keeps me fit and makes me appreciate life.

“After I retired in 2000, I decided to continue with farming and then my sons also helped me start my own business. So I am glad that even at my old age, I still have the strength to enjoy life and support my family.”

His wife, Dayal Wati was also a schoolteacher.

“We always made sure to teach together at the same school and we sure did enjoy our years of teaching,” Mr Dayal said.

“I actually took an early retirement because the 2000 coup happened and I was worried about the FNPF pension.

“But now that I am a businessman, I have never regretted taking up this opportunity as it keeps me on my feet and I enjoy serving customers.”

More Stories