Monthly Archives: February 2019

…what price a bottle of water when you have nothing else?

…over a chat about life in general, and about charity in particular, with a great pal of mine at Bahrain Islamic Bank, Mahmood Qannati, the superb Brand and Marketing guru, I recalled an incident that occurred in Manila in the Philippines around 20 years ago… at the time, I was the boss of a domestic shipping company, Negros Navigation Co Limited, whose fleet of vessels carried cargo and passengers up and down the length of the entire country…

…with my armed bodyguards (another story for another time!), I was out mingling with the queuing passengers before one of the sailings, and in the crowd a young woman, looking kinda battered by circumstance, was standing there silently, with a small girl about three years old by her side, a veritable angel with a dirty face… in one arm, the woman held a chubby wee Buddha of a baby boy, in the other, a bottle of water and an envelope enclosed in a clear plastic wrapper… my guards, thankfully, recognised the envelope to be one of the frequent requests the company received from the Department of Social Welfare, requesting a free ticket for some of our less fortunate wannabe passengers… the blistering heat was the typical dockside furnace, bashing up from the roadway tarmac… the family looked exhausted… I instructed the guards to accompany the woman and her children to my office and I summoned the lady who looked after our ticket sales and passengers… while we waited, I ordered some fast food and soft drinks for the three of them… they obviously had not eaten in a while… the woman wanted to travel down to the south of the country, an overnight journey, to try to get back to her original family, long since visited, and probably when the woman had known happier times… we arranged the complimentary tickets and a goodies bag of things for the children and the mother… meantime, the little girl, full of fun and mischief, had removed the rubber flip flops from her feet, and unexpectedly lobbed one of them at me, giggling… my guards were alarmed!… the boss was under attack from an infant assailant!… I could hardly contain my laughter and picked up the flip flop and threw it back at the child… there ensued ten minutes of flip flop warfare, with everybody in my office reduced to helplessness with the delight of this kid’s laughing shrieks… then I learned a bit more from my sales lady…

…this poor woman had been surviving, without a husband to support her, for goodness knows how long by purchasing one!, yes one!, bottle of water at a time with a cluster of coins, then reselling it for a few centavos profit, then buying another, and repeating the process as many times as she could manage in order to keep herself and her two offspring alive… that day, I learned much about the meaning of ‘living on the edge’, and what real charity means… it isn’t about money, although of course that always helps, but more to do with caring for our fellow human beings… about being responsible for putting a smile back on the face of somebody who has been suffering for far too long… it’s a lesson I have carried with me ever since… and one that I hope never, ever to forget … see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

ALL MY BLOG POSTS ARE FREE TO SHARE OR RE-BLOG SHOULD YOU SO WISH—BE MY GUEST!

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…Seumas (Casper the Ghost?) Gallacher…

…my grateful thanks for some of my Guest Posters over the past few weeks who have helped to keep my blog alive, while I was BDOT (Busy Doing Other Things)… I make no apologies for the absence, as pressure of the day job (which pays the light bulbs and printer ribbons) have seen each day filled with ‘stuff’… part of that ‘stuff’, frankly, has been a commercial stream of business allied to my writing… I’ve alluded to it a few times last year, and it has grown into a sizable chunk of my waking day… ghostwriting… sum’how, (thankfully), the WURD has gone out that Master Gallacher ‘writes a bit, and writes rather well’ – so much so, I have just embarked on my eighth ghostwriting engagement in the past twelve months, doing autobiographies and family/corporate histories… the personal biographical commissions are absolutely, mind-blowingly humbling… to have sumb’dy trust in my  confidentiality as they tell stories about themselves and their lives, some elements of which they have never shared with another soul until talking with me… it’s unlike any other sharing experience I have encountered in a career in which, at times, I have been a counsellor and a private confidante… this stuff is different and it is special… my sixth Jack Calder crime thriller is still bubbling away as Work-In-Prigress, but ever so slowly, and I’m okay with that,,, the book gets done when it gets done… I have resisted trying to force-pace that one, as I know that would not produce my own level of optimum writing standard… so, as I morph into ‘The Phantom of the Laptop’, I have to guard against shouting ‘Boo!’ at the screen every now and then… I think I scare my Mac enuff as it is… meantime, my novels are still available as noted here…

THE VIOLIN MANS LEGACY

myBook.to/theviolinmanslegacy

VENGEANCE WEARS BLACK

myBook.to/vengeancewearsblack

SAVAGE PAYBACK

myBook.to/savagepayback

KILLER CITY

myBook.to/calderkillercity

DEADLY IMPASSE

myBook.to/Calderdeadlyimpasse

…see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!

ALL MY BLOG POSTS ARE FREE TO SHARE OR RE-BLOG SHOULD YOU SO WISH—BE MY GUEST!

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Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff