His father was a lowly farmer. His mother just a plain housewife. Life was difficult. The boy Tobias went to school, rain or shine, traversing an almost 3 kms rough road by foot. His ordinary slippers often played petulant with the grip coming off. His spartan lunch packed in a plastic container consisted of just vegetables and over ripe fruits harvested from their farm. The boy assisted his father in tiny ways beyond school hours in the vegetable garden where his dad worked hard. The farm was the only source of their meager income.
He went to school every day without a single cent in his pocket. Being very friendly by disposition and warm in nature, he was liked by his class mates. They competed with each other in sharing their lunch with him. Being a bright boy, he in turn helped them in clearing their doubts in their lessons. It was an happy arrangement that worked well and took care of Tobias’s hunger.
The boy always dreamed of owning a bicycle like many other class mates that would render commuting to school easy. He knew the situation in the house and never asked his father for one. But the loving father aware of the hardship the young boy faced walking both ways, procured a second-hand bike for him. The boy was greatly elated. He thought of ways to put the cycle to good use by distributing the morning dailies and hot pandesal to rich neighborhoods in the town proper. He woke up early in the mornings and worked hard with a smile on his face. On weekends, Tobias sold vegetables and fruits harvested from their backyard and orchard. He earned a tidy sum and shared with his parents keeping a small portion for himself.
While riding his bike, his mind would start to weave beautiful dreams of a bright future for him. He was fond of seas and ships. He told to himself, “one day, I will be working in a big ship and would be cruising the world for free.” Aboard his second-hand bicycle while selling newspapers and hot pandesal every wee hours of the morning, his mind would fly a thousand miles, creating wonderful dreams.
As he was dropping newspaper one early morning, he opened the gate of a rich man’s bungalow to leave the papers at the porch. As he entered the gate, the boy noticed a wallet lying on the ground. The rich man who had just woken up and who had come to the balcony noticed the boy bending to pick up something. Curious he stood there watching the boy with interest. The boy opened the wallet and found a bundle of money stacked inside with credit cards and other papers. He folded it immediately and walked towards the door to press the bell. The rich man hurried down to open the door.
Tobias said, "Sorry Sir, to disturb you early in the morning. I found this wallet lying across the gate when I came to leave the paper. Evidently it must have fallen,” with a meek smile on his face.
The rich man looked at the young boy clad in shabby dress but with a heart that was pure. He hugged the boy on an impulse and reeled of questions, “What is your name? Are you studying? Where do you live? What is your dad doing?” His eyes were moist with happiness at seeing such a honest boy despite the temptations that his poverty should normally induce anyone else to quietly walk away with the wallet.
To end the long story short, suffice it to say that the rich man was a captain in a ship and that he took the boy under his care, financed him for his studies and took him under his wings in the ship in due time.
Today, Tobias is cruising the world for free….aboard one of the biggest cruise ships in the world as one of its crew. From that bicycle that helped him create beautiful dreams, his hard work early in the mornings and above all his honesty, many things helped him realize his dream. He focused hard on his dream and worked his way in a positive spirit. It did materalise because he did his best to make those dreams come true. Things happen when we believe in ourselves.
"All that we are is a result of what we have thought."
~ Buddha from the Book, The Secret by Rhonda Byrne
Written for Thursday Tales (Tale No. 16)
Photo Courtesy: AtXU