The 76-year-old battery charger!

The 76-year-old battery charger!

Amazingly, after a bypass surgery, Valentine found the best way to recuperate – physical activity

Valentine

Valentine Walter Ward will turn 76 in January 2020. Having been a physical instructor for the past 20 years, he is now planning to shift to becoming a teacher of western dance for seniors, aged 60 to 80 years. Yes 60 to 80, you heard that right.   
“I am not retiring, there is no retirement for me,” he clarifies, firmly. He looks at every phase in his life only as a shift in its currents, describing his love for dancing as a “passion”. There are some cherished moments to remember, such as winning his first prize in a dance competition for cha-cha-cha at the age of 18, or topping another contest with his sister in Goa, or just a stray compliment; “Oh you are a neat dancer.”
“If there is nothing else to do, then dance,” is his motto. “Dancing is not complicated, it is a pleasure. It is what keeps you going in life.”
The spry, wiry physical instructor has been rather like a battery charger for students. “We always used to wait for his classes,” says Venkat, an ex-student, musing about those riotous classes when he felt they all got a ‘shot’ from Walter Ward. “We got complete instructions from Sir, even though we used to shiver sometimes.”
Valentine’s smile too is fulsome under his Chevron moustache, though his white hair and no-nonsense approach make him look rather like a military man. Amazingly, after a bypass surgery he found the best way to recuperate – physical activity. Why hasn’t age withered him? He does have one simple secret – eat well. “Put good, healthy, quality food inside you." And his driving force? “When people get older, some tend to give up. I don’t know why,” he says. “You should make the best of life, after all. If you’ve missed out on anything when you were young or middle aged, this is the time to make up for it, no matter how old you are.”
 

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