It’s Australia day as I write this – I just got back from a swim with my
kids at the beach where we hung out with some other seniors who
were singing the National anthem and eating lamingtons. (god bless em)
This is a story I sent out about 2 years ago about the freedom we have
and about a cabbie I spoke to told me about his journey from slavery to
freedom and the gratitude he has for the
country we live in and I think it’s really fitting for today.
I had an amazing response when I first sent it out and so I’m
hoping you will enjoy it too.
It was when I was last in Sydney on my way to the airport heading home
after an action packed week with clients.
Here’s what happened…
The cabby’s name was Christopher and he was originally from Africa.
He was locked up with Nelson
Mandela 35 years
ago and detained as a political
After being imprisoned for several years enduring malnourishment,
torture and extremely harsh prison conditions, he was released and
sentenced to home detention then escaped via a network of removilist
truck drivers in Africa where he sought asylum in an Australian
Upon arriving at the embassy he was granted asylum and safe passage to
So after 3 days of his release from prison he was told by this Aussie
in the Australian Embassy…
“Don’t worry mate your’e safe here, just take a seat over there and
I’ll get you some dinner”
He described the feeling to me as “like the chains being unlocked from
around my body”
this as we were on our way to the airport from the my luxury hotel in
His words to me were…”people in this country don’t know how well
they have it…you really can have anything you want”
when he spoke I was immediately reminded that he was right.
He told me he was a close personal friend of Mandela’s I instantly
knew it was the truth.
He said Australia is a great country and I shook his hand and told him
he was the wisest taxi driver I have ever met.
He went on to tell me he spends his Anzac day driving various diggers
from their homes to the various services around Sydney whilst feeding
them cakes, sandwiches, biscuits and cups of tea – all prepared the
day before by his wife – all done for free as his way of saying thank
you to a country he is eternally grateful for.
And what does this have to do with you?
Well, it’s that feeling of gratitude that reminds us of just how easy
life is for us (certainly by comparison to Christopher) and it gives
us perspective that’s often lost in the fog of everyday mayhem.
I am grateful for having met Christopher and I know Chistopher’s words
will stay with me for many years to come and for that I am also
I am also grateful for you and others like you who continue to be our
clients, read our updates and attend our events.
Sometimes it really is a good feeling to simply say thanks
and be thankful.
Have an awesome Australia day.