This is a story from India during the colonial days. Most of the people in the village worked as peasants for the village landlord and got a very small share of the crops and a token money in return for the hard work they put all day in the field.
One year the village witnessed one of the severest droughts ever. The crop failed and the villagers did not get anything in return from the landlord. Most of the villagers fled to the cities.
One of the villagers was particularly in a very bad state. His wife was suffering from malaria and in the absence of food or money, he was desperate.
One day he was sitting under the village tree and was thinking desperately about ways to get some money somehow so that he can take his wife and his children to the town, where he knew that somehow he would get some work. He then saw his cow wandering nearby munching the dried up patches of grass and bushes.
He suddenly had a thought to sell his cow. “Surely someone would like to buy her,” he thought.
The next day, early morning he started for the market. There, he stood under a tree and explained his plight to anyone who came and requested them to buy his cow. Nobody seemed to be the least interested.
The day wore by. The sun relentlessly shown on the barren landscape!
With sweat drenched dirty clothes and in the poor state of health he was in, he was looking a picture of the misery. As evening was approaching, he was losing all hope he had started with.
Then a merchant passed him. He looked at the peasant and with a sudden drive of compassion decided to help him sell the cow.
He asked a few questions and then, in a loud voice full of enthusiasm, he announced to the passersby, “Ladies and gentlemen, never let go an opportunity like this. This cow here, gives two bucketfuls of milk every day, morning and evening. Do not be mistaken by her health. It is just because she has recently given birth to a young calf.
This animal is of such an exceptional breed that last year she had won a prize during the agricultural exhibition of the neighboring village. My friend here has come to an urgent situation and is willing to part with her for a price that seems to me ridiculous for such a prize animal. Who amongst you realize that an opportunity like this does not come every day?”
Meanwhile, a small crowd gathered around them all willing to buy the animal. They all wanted to know the price. The merchant asked the peasant, “Well my friend, what is the price you expect? We have several buyers here”.
The peasant stood up and with head held high, declared with pride and arrogance, “This animal is mine. She is too good to be sold. I shall keep her.”
The first that comes to my mind is that we do not appreciate sufficiently what we have. Health, children, girlfriend or boyfriend etc, we take them all for granted without rejoicing each day for our luck. There are certain things that we feel we have a right to. We forget that certain people lack all those things.
Just imagine if you were born in a war-torn country…. Just imagine if you were born with no hands and no feet. We have to be grateful for what we have be it little, crooked or ugly because someone is dying to have that.
Sometimes it is necessary to have the look of others in order to become conscious of the value of what we have. We do not take the pain to explain the advantages of our proposal and often our remuneration is less because we do not make this effort towards the proposal.
One very thing is that, the man got to know the worth of the cow. Do you know your worth? You are not unimportant. You are worth more than you think. You could be going through a rough patch now. You could be down. You could be heartbroken but you are not unimportant. You are worth more! You are important to someone!! Someone looks up to you for inspiration. Someone looks up to you for ideas. It could be a younger brother or sister. It could be a neighbor. It could be a friend… just know that you are important and important to someone.
“Depression and self-pity seldom attracts anybody. Be enthusiastic and the whole world will look up to you. You can win only if you love what you have.” -Amit Kumar
When my dad called all his children to his room, I was a little bit perturbed. Why? Because I hadn’t finished reading the book he gave me. Once in a while the old man will give his children books to read. When you are done reading, he will ask you questions on what you have read. I thought it was going to be a similar experience. I have been playing FIFA 11 with my younger brothers and a friend all day.
We went to his room, made ourselves comfortable and that was when I started making up all the excuses I was going to give should he ask about the book. My mom was seated on his left. I have three other siblings now (the eldest went into Abraham’s bosom some years ago. May he R.I.P)
My dad started off his speech by holding up a ₵20 note. He asked: “Who would like this ₵20 note. This is a real Kufuor dollar?”
Hands started going up. He said: “I am going to give this ₵20 to one of you but first, let me do this.”
He proceeded to crumple the cedi note up. He then asked: “Who still wants it?”
Still the hands were up in the air. “Well,” he replied, “what if I do this?”
He dropped it on the ground and started to grind it into the floor with his shoe. He picked it up, now crumpled and dirty.
“Now who still wants it?” Still the hands went into the air. “My children, you have all learned a very valuable lesson. No matter what I did to the money, you still wanted it because it did not decrease in value. It was still worth ₵20.
Many times in our lives, we are dropped, crumpled and ground into the dirt by the decisions we make and the circumstances that come our way. We feel as though we are worthless but no matter what have happened or what will happen, you will never lose your value. To those who love you, you are priceless.
The worth of our lives comes not in what we do or who we know but by who we are. You are somebody. You really are. Do not let anyone make you think otherwise. Yes…. there are times you will feel depressed, repressed and oppressed but stay true to yourself. See yourself as that “Kufuor dollar” that was handled badly by my dad yet all his children craved for it.
It was a turning point in my life. Don’t be intimidated. Don’t give up. Press on because victory is assured!
There once was a very poor man living in a village who had a very fine horse. So fine, in fact, that the lord of the castle wanted to buy it but the old man always refused.
“To me this horse is not merely an animal. He’s a friend. How could I sell you my friend?”
One morning he went to the stable and found his horse gone. All the villagers said, “We told you! You should have sold your horse. Now he’s been stolen instead. What terrible luck.”
“Bad luck or good luck,” the old man said. “Who can say?”
Everyone laughed at him but 15 days later the horse returned, followed by a whole herd of wild horses. He had escaped from the stable, courted a young mare and returned with the rest of the herd following behind!
“What luck!” the villagers cried.
The old man and his son began training the wild horses but a week later the man’s son broke his leg trying to train one of the horses.
“Bad luck,” said his friends. “What are you going to do now without your son to help you? You who are already so poor.”
“Bad luck, good luck, who can say?” the old man replied. A few days later an army belonging to the lord of the land passed through the village and forced all the young men to become soldiers. All…… except the old man’s son because of his broken leg.
“How lucky you are,” the villagers cried. “All our children gone to war, but you’ve been able to keep your son. Our sons will probably be killed…”
The old man replied, “Bad luck, good luck… who can say?”
People ask me why I love the Chorkor Trotro TV series on TV3 in Ghana. I always tell them I learn from the awkward situations and not only from the best of situations. On the front of the Chorkor Trotro bus in the TV series is written “Let them say.” Let them say speaks volumes.
One day I will blog about that but what it simply means is that, let the people talk all they want but do your own talking. Never be misguided or misled or discouraged by what people say about you. The best way is to prove them wrong. Who can say? I bet no one. There are just three things I would like to talk about from the story…..not to bore you.
#1 What people say about you should not affect you negatively
I was at the airport yesterday and engaged myself in a conversation with a lady. She had come to wait for a friend who was coming to Ghana from Italy in a very beautiful dress. As we started talking I said something about friends that made her speak as if she was on drugs. She was talking like one controlled by a remote. Eddie Murphy could not have even spoken faster than her. She was coming from a wedding with the same dress. This lady buys clothes from a woman (Shop 1) in her neighborhood but a friend of hers advised her to buy from a different shop (Shop 2) because that shop had exotic clothes.
She listened and spent her savings on the new dress from the Shop 2. She went to the wedding and realized that she was the “lady gaga” of the event. Everyone including the couple had dressed in a simple but awesome way. She was telling me how her friend’s words made her lose money and also made her a laughing jackal at the wedding. If you listen to people all the time, you are bound for disgrace.
#2 Be who you are!
The man never changed who he was. He was a poor man…yes… but he knew who he was. He didn’t change because of what people said to him. He did not even sell his horse to the lord of the land. He valued the horse. We must value our integrity. Dignity is something thrown to the dogs lately. People don all sorts of things because of money. People sell their bodies, kill other human beings because of money but this man knew what it was to value something.
We have two ears. One is to listen and the other is to let the negative you hear out. All the negative things he heard entered in one ear and out in the other. He was not ready to be a different person. He was not ready to be ungrateful. He was still the man he used be. He carved a niche for himself as the man who was ever grateful. Bad luck or good luck….he was grateful.
#3 Don’t let circumstances change you!
I always say “this too shall pass” when I go through a difficult period. I have lived with this maxim for a long time. When I go through a bad phase of my life, I know it will surely end. No condition is permanent. When you are hungry, don’t kill yourself because eventually you will get food to eat.
When you are satisfied, don’t fool about because eventually you will go hungry.
Life is all about ups and downs. We just have to make an effort to stand the test of time. The poor man never made any circumstance change his belief. He believed in the fact that bad luck or good luck isn’t his to say. Even when his favorite horse left, it didn’t change him. When the son got hurt, it didn’t change him as well.
The future comes to us in bits and pieces. We never know what lies in store for us but if you always maintain a positive attitude the doors of chance remain open, and you will be a happier person.
Who can say? No one can say so don’t lose hope. Live by the Chorkor Trotro mantra.
Life is like a multiple choice question. Sometimes the choices confuse you, not the question itself. The people who laugh the hardest with a genuine smile are those who have fought the toughest battles. There are times that we feel all is over. We feel so depressed. We get disappointed. There are many of such times as life is full of ups and downs. The worst part is when people you trust let you down. They could be your parents, relatives, church members or friends.
Another painful thing is losing yourself in the process of loving someone too much, forgetting that you are special too. That happens to all of us. Now, let me move on to some of the principles that can help us live this life.
CRTL – Control yourself
Self control is paramount in life. A person without self-control is like a city with broken-down walls. – Proverbs 25:28. In the ancient times, all the cities were guarded with great walls. If the walls are broken, it means the enemy can enter at any time and destroy the inhabitants. Control over one’s self therefore becomes very vital. If you want to be a great or successful person, you learn to control yourself.
There are some times that you would be provoked. There are some times that you would be tempted to do something unwholesome but your ability to put everything on hold helps. The control centre of your life is your attitude. Speak when you are angry and you will make best speech you will ever regret. -Ambrose Bierce
ALT – Look for an alternate solution
We hit the wall sometimes. The problems come in bounds. As soon as one is solved, the other resurfaces. This makes life very difficult. We get through certain situations and we think that is the end of the road. I believe strongly that when we use the ALT in life, we would find a solution. The solution may be hidden within the problem. Dig deep and you will surely find it. There is no need to kill yourself.
Most people contemplate death when the going gets tough. Instead of conceiving ideas of negativity, try an alternate solution that is positive. If A didn’t work, why don’t you try B? There are 26 letters in the alphabet. When A is used, you have 25 more that you can attend to. It wouldn’t hurt to have Plans A to Z. Would it?
DEL – Delete the situation that hurts you
This is the most difficult part of life….deleting certain people who once meant a lot to you….letting go of certain situations that once gave you so much joy. It could be an old habit. It could be an illegal business but the earlier you deleted that from your life the better. Instead of worrying about a situation or certain people, why don’t you delete them from your life? Some friends are like poison. They destroy us when they are in our lives.
Stop worrying so much. Worrying is using your imagination to create things you don’t want. Numbing the pain for a while will make it worse when you finally feel it. Instead of going through pains the second time, we must endeavor to delete situations, people and businesses that hurt us.
You can let your smile change people but don’t let people change your smile. You are born for greatness. Let me know what you also think about CRT + ALT +DEL.
A young black boy saw a balloon seller on a street corner. His eyes sparkled as he gazed at all the different colored balloons – red, blue, white, black, yellow…
The old man selling the balloons saw the boy hesitate but the boy later gathered courage and approached him.
“Tell me mister,” said the boy, “Do the black balloons fly as high as the others?” The old man felt a tear forming in his eye. He picked the boy up, sat him on his knee and said, “Look.” He let go of all the balloons. They drifted up in a cluster, higher and higher into the blue sky, until they were so high they disappeared. “Did you see that?” the balloon seller asked. “Yes,” said the boy. “Did the black balloons fly as high as the others?” “Yes, Mister, they did.” “You see my boy, the balloons are like people.
The important thing isn’t their color, or what they look like on the outside. No, the important thing is WHAT’S INSIDE. And what’s inside you makes all the difference in life.
That’s what I just want you to know. There is something in you that makes you different. It isn’t about the looks. It is about what’s within. Your zeal, enthusiam makes you who you are.
How you approach a situation defines you a great deal. Let’s resolve to make a difference because that’s how the we are built. We are stronger than we give ourselves credit for.
Have a lovely month!
There are some 700 million people in Africa without access to electricity. As the continent modernizes, those people will need power. But could African power be a perfect place for leapfrog technology–when a developing society goes straight to the most modern technology without going through the iterations seen in the developed world? A new windfarm in Kenya might indicate yes.
The $870 million Lake Turkana Wind Power (LTWP) project, set to begin construction in December, will be the largest wind farm in Africa when it is completed. The project, which will be built in a remote area near the Lake Turkana basin, will use 360 wind turbines to pump out 300 megawatts of power–enough to power tens of thousands of homes and add 30% more energy capacity to Kenya’s grid. LWTP, a consortium of Kenyan and Dutch organizations including Anset Africa and KP&P, also plans to install a 266-mile-long transmission line to bring energy from the turbine project to the main grid.
This is a big step for Africa’s renewable energy capacity, but there is still a long way to go. There is only one grid-linked solar power project currently operating on the continent (in Rwanda), though there are several under construction. And at least one country in the region–South Africa–relies almost entirely on coal for energy.
But if LTWP is completed on schedule (by 2014) and without any future financing issues, investors may soon come around to the idea that large-scale renewable projects in Africa make sense.
This association was born in January 2010 and incorporated in January 2011. The main objective for forming it is to help build a stronger African brand for Africans by Africans.
It must be put on record that this association is not a supporters union but to turn abstract subscription of Glo into community helping hands through physical friendship. The association currently has around 5,600 members on facebook and other social networking sites. Some of the activities of the association include;
- Glo Green Ghana– which will function as a tree planting arm for the association to help turn deforested lands into green forest. This activity is in line with the world climate agenda against green house immersions. The slogan for this arm of association is “whiles we talk we turn Africa green.”
- Glo Rural Aid – This will be into rural community development by providing basic social amenities like boreholes, direct supply of second hand clothes etc. The slogan for this arm of the association is “ Glo together with you will bright the corner you are”
- Glo tertiary debates– will help to put to test the minds of our intellectuals in our various tertiary institutions on national issues in non-partisan topics to bring the best out of them. The slogan for this arm is “Glo- helping tertiary minds to flourish.”
- Glo cultural platform– will bring together all community cultural troops into a battle on a national stage to show our rich culture. The slogan for Glo cultural platform is “our culture, our identity”
- Glo health awareness – will sample some diseases and create awareness and screening in our various communities. We will also organize and allow the various fitness associations into our association. “Our health is our wealth”
- Glo empowerment summit– shall help young graduates prepare for the job market by providing training. Those who want to be entrepreneurs will also be trained for the corporate world.
- Glo community games – will bring fun into our various communities by bringing face to face local football and basketball groups into battle. Lesser known sports like snooker will also be encouraged.
- Glo teaching Aid – will seek to help young members by organizing free vacation classes for them. Senior members will be encouraged to volunteer to teach in various communities. But there shall be rewards at the end of the exercise. The slogan is “Education is the preserve of all”
All these activities are geared towards strengthening the bond between Glo and its customers and to portray GLO as a real partner for development.
A membership ID card will open a world of opportunities for you. Join and let’s move Ghana forward!
OFFICE OF FRIENDS OF GLO GHANA