Bucket List #4

WP_20170401_10_48_22_Pro[1].jpg

These are the collection buckets we used to raise money for the Hope Foundation.  Gavin, Jerry, Esha and I have variously waved these buckets at the very many generous people of Cashel, Thurles and various Tipperary townlands.  We brought them to Rugby matches in Dublin and Limerick, and to Hurling games in Semple Stadium.  They have seen the warm days of summer and the cold dark days of winter.

They have earned a proud position in my “Bucket List” as they contain many great memories of a good year.

Four years ago my oldest son Jerry participated in the trip to Kolkata with Rockwell College.  He documented his journey on his blog:

https://jerrytocalcutta.wordpress.com/about/

This year it was all about my younger son, Gavin, who made his own trip, which he recorded on wordpress, twitter, snapchat, etc.  His fundraising exploits are on his  wordpress site:

https://gavinclancykolkata.wordpress.com/

PLEASE DO NOT SEND THEM MONEY.  They have finished their trips and made their visits to Kolkata.  But if you would like to support the fabulous work of the Hope Foundation feel free to do so at their site:

http://www.hopefoundation.ie/

What I like about the Hope Foundation is that it is a charity that strives to make itself useless.  What do I mean by that?

Some charities operate in a way that perpetuates dependency.  Their business is to “help” disadvantaged people.  But if they are “too successful” there will be no poor people left to help and they will effectively be out of business.  Self-perpetuating charities are not things I like, or appreciate.

I am very much of the mind to take people out of dependency.  This is where Hope operate.  They focus on educating kids to escape the cycle of slum living.  They help the parents to escape the cycle by supporting small enterprises, and by freeing up the parents to work by caring for the kids in crèches.  The greatest day for Hope Foundation will be when they can happily close down their facilities in Kolkata because their job is done.

That is not a pipedream.  It can happen.

As my son Jerry reminds me frequently “Give a man a Hamburger and he eats for a day.  Teach him to Hamburger, and that metaphor only works for Fish”.

The Fish:  by William Butler Yeats

Although you hide in the ebb and flow
Of the pale tide when the moon has set,
The people of coming days will know
About the casting out of my net,
And how you have leaped times out of mind
Over the little silver cords,
And think that you were hard and unkind,
And blame you with many bitter words.

Fish

 

 

 

First impressions

You know the old saying, you don’t get a second chance to make a first impression!  Dale Carnegie, in his book “How to win friends and influence people” figured we interact with the world in four ways.  What we do.  What we say.  How we say it, and How we dress.

Of these I have no doubt that the most important is what we do.  We are what we do.  Look it up at wearewhatwedo.org if you don’t believe me.  Change the world for a fiver 🙂

My son flew out to Kolkata this week and it is very funny to read the first impressions of a 16 year old upon reaching a third world environment.  Here it is (edited for punctuation).  It took two flights to get there, stopping in Dubai:

I didnt get any sleep on either flight so I’m exhausted now.  Today we did loads.  On the first plane, I sat just a couple of rows behind first class so lots of leftover luxuries (biscuits, drinks etc) were given to me.  Dubai airport was huge but we were only there for an hour.  The next plane was horrible!  It was dirty, the seats were smaller and were really uncomfortable compared to the earlier flight and we couldn’t watch anything we wanted on demand, there were 20 channels with different things on. Calcutta airport was shabby and dirty.  On the flight to Calcutta they had to fumigate the plane during the flight so they sprayed chemicals throughout the plane.  I also had to fill in a card saying what I had to declare ( fish, seeds etc) it was the same as Australia on tv.  The hotel is great and everyone gets their own bed.  Calcutta is much worse than you could imagine.  There are slums next to skyscrapers and half of the city is under construction!  Instead of scaffolding they use bamboo.  Every car is honking its horn all the time and today we saw the aftermath of a car that went up in flames after tonnes of fire burst out of a manhole!!!  We visited a school for young girls whose parents can’t take care of them.  They were very excited and they performed plays, skits and dances for us.  Cows wander through the city and people take no notice of them.  Tomorrow we will be visiting a home for boys and on Sunday will will be given a full tour of Calcutta.  The food isn’t great.  It was nicer on the plane.”

The Cow; by Robert Louis Stephenson

The friendly cow all red and white,
I love with all my heart:
She gives me cream with all her might,
To eat with apple-tart.

She wanders lowing here and there,
And yet she cannot stray,
All in the pleasant open air,
The pleasant light of day;

And blown by all the winds that pass
And wet with all the showers,
She walks among the meadow grass
And eats the meadow flowers.