I am not someone who is prone to hero worship, nor someone who is drawn in by public hype and fan fever, yet I feel compelled to share one particular story that my mother recounted to me that I wished I could remember. Apparently shortly following his release from prison, I was fortunate enough to have met Nelson Mandela in person. To a young white child, I'm sure I had little clue as to who this ...larger than life stranger standing before me was, and certainly unaware how much of an important role he would be playing all of our lives in the very near future.
From behind prison walls he and his fellow visionaries built the blue prints of the South Africa we live in today. Through all of our countries vagaries and inconsistencies, it is still regarded the world over as a shining beacon of hope as to mans ability to forgive, to rebuild, and to forge ahead as a far more united people than anyone could have imagined.
I admire Mandela for the massive positive impact he has had on our colourful history, yet at the same time remaining humble enough to crouch down on a knee, shake the hands of a young white boy and ask him how his day was. No fan fare. No 20 man entourage. Just a man talking to a boy.
If only I could remember it...
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