Friday, 25 June 2010

How Things Come Round

Fleming was a poor Scottish farmer. One day at work in a field he heard a cry for help. Following the sound, Fleming came to a deep bog, in which a boy was stuck up to his chest, screaming and sinking. Farmer Fleming tied a rope around his own waist and the other end to a tree, and waded into the bog. After a mighty struggle in which it seemed they would both perish, the exhausted farmer pulled himself and the boy to safety. He took the lad back to the farmhouse, where Mrs Fleming fed him, dried his clothes, and when satisfied he had recovered, sent him on his way home.

The next day a carriage arrived at the Fleming's humble farmhouse. An well-dressed man stepped out and introduced himself as the father of the boy whom Fleming had saved. "You saved my son's life," said the man to Fleming, "How can I repay you?"

"I don't want payment," Fleming replied, "Anyone would have done the same."

At that moment, Fleming's own young son appeared at the farmhouse door.

"Is he your son?" the man asked.

"Yes," said Fleming proudly.

"I have an idea. Let me pay for his education. If he's like his father, he'll grow to be a man we'll both be proud of."

And so he did. The farmer's son attended the very best schools, graduated medical college, and later became the world-renowned nobel prize-winning scientist and discoverer of penicillin, Sir Alexander Fleming.

It is said that many years later, the grown man who'd been saved from the bog as a boy, was stricken with pneumonia.

Penicillin saved his life.

This blog is linked to my other  Celebration


  1. what an uplifting Friday blog - Thanks Ralph

  2. A great story, esp. due to its emphasis on education, something which makes anything possible. Something I think we forget here in the UK, or we often take education for granted. When I first met my better half, who is from Greek Cyprus, he showed me occupied Cyprus and the tiny Govt. houses set up in the south for the refugees immediately after occupation. He explained to me that the only refugees who managed to prosper were those who had an education and therefore had transferable skills they could use anywhere in the country. The uneducated refugees who largely worked in agriculture didn't do so well - they'd lost their land, their livelihood and didn't have the education or skills to develop a new life in southern Cyprus. As a result, Cypriots place an remarkable emphasis on education, more than any nationality I've met. They learnt it's true value the hard way. Their history is sad but the lessons they've learnt and new values they apply to life are inspiring.

  3. What an amazing story, Ralph. Now I have to go see this painting on your other blog. I know it will have a story too.

  4. Good Morning, Ralph, today will be a great day!
    This is the kind of story that if you made it up no one would believe you! Truth can be stranger than fiction! It is a nice thought though that the farmer saved the boy for the simple reason that it was the right thing to do. Always good is better than evil because it is gooder!!!

  5. It lifts my spirits to see people helping people. It's humbling when I am that one who is helped. Today, pulling into the marina at Ketchikan, Alaska, we faced driving rain, wind, and a current that kept pushing us off the dock. I had my lines and fenders set, but couldn't get close enough to the dock to step off the boat and tie us off. On our second attempt, a husband and wife came out of the warmth of their nearby boat, and grabbed lines and secured us to the dock.

    It's what people do. Help others. I am humbly grateful. Loved today's story!

  6. great story, Ralph...uplifting! The story reminds us that people have a higher self...we should all operate from the higher self...!

  7. Thank you for sharing this.