It amuses me when I meet people my age (twenty-eight) and younger who think they have the answers to life all figured out. I too used to think that way and tried to carry around that air of confidence. Fortunately I was awakened to my ignorance when I met an extraordinary man who not only became my friend but also my mentor. After reading â€œThe Teacher Who Changed My Life,â€ by Nicholas Gage, I realized that like Gage who was touched by an angel (his teacher and mentor Miss Hurd) when he was guided into the â€œNewspaper Clubâ€ that I too was blessed to have been guided to this man who taught me a few lessons and answers to life. He allowed me to view life, others and myself with an entirely different perspective.
I strongly related to the anxiety and fear Gage felt when he came to America to live with his father he didnâ€™t know (203). I myself was completely alone and scared when I moved to Ventura County in 1998. Without friends or family to help get myself established I rented a room, went to a temp agency, and started a new job all in one week.
I was supposed to share an office with someone at this new job and that is when I met Gary Gentile. He was a tall thin man in his early fifties filled with an amazing sense of integrity and had these beautiful blue eyes that were filled with wisdom. I immediately felt a sense of security and admiration as he introduced himself to me and made me feel completely at ease.
I had never had a father growing up and as the months passed Gary and I soon.
became more like father and daughter than employees. Every afternoon was reserved for our long conversations about life and our experiences. .
I remember a conversation one day that we were having about my mom and sister. Like Gage, â€œI was trying to put their painful memories behind meâ€ (204) but he gently coaxed me into telling him how they both treated me.