Life’s banquet

Life's banquet

It was around the turn of the century and life was hard for the family living from the land. So hard that they decided that they had to believe the promise of the new world.

So they sold what little they had and only just managed to buy passage on an ocean liner to North America. Their cabin was below the water line and it could, at best, be described as only adequate, but they were going to the new world. Life would be better there.

For food the father had begged the indulgence of a farmer to sell him a sack of turnips for the few pennies he had left in order to feed the family on the 12 day journey across the sea. They all believed in the promise and were prepared to sacrifice in order to have that promise fulfilled. They were going to the new world. Life would be so much better there.

And as the great steamship started out to sea the family was on deck, with everyone else, to wave goodbye to the land they had called home. It was not terribly hard to wave goodbye, for they had left nothing at all behind. Everything was gone. They had only their hopes and they had their sack of turnips. Life would be better very very soon.

So each day the family would come up to the top deck and enjoy the sun and live in their belief that they only had to wait a little bit longer for the something better that was coming in North America. There was one problem.

While on the deck it was impossible to miss the aroma coming from the galley and the view of the great dining room with the massive buffet. It became increasingly difficult to face the sack of turnips. It wasn’t long before the children could no longer be coerced to come out into the sunshine. The smell of the wonderful food that they could not have was too much to bear. Indeed, by the eighth day neither the children nor the mother would leave the windowless cabin in the bottom of the ship.

The father was feeling helpless in a way that he had never experienced before. By the tenth day no one, not even the father could eat even one bite of turnip. Something had to be done.

On the evening of the eleventh day, feeling helpless and broken the father went out to find the Captain of the ship. This was absolutely the most difficult task he had ever set for himself, for he was a very proud man. The normally so cheerful Captain slowly lost all expression as he stood before this poor farmer, hat in hand, telling his story. The father, finally, with halting voice, begged the Captain “to please allow… at least the children, to have just one pass at the wonderful buffet, just one meal, please”.

The Captain was visibly moved by this plea. He touched the father’s shoulder, and… as gently as he could, said, “my very good man, all ticket holders, including your whole family, are entitled to all meals”. .

Our beliefs colour our view of what is possible
Our beliefs drive our choices
Our beliefs drive our behaviour
Our behaviour drives our results…

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