I bargained with Life for a penny, And Life would pay no more,
However I begged at evening
When I counted my scanty store;
For Life is a just employer,
He gives you what you ask,
But once you have set the wages,
Why, you must bear the task.
I worked for a menial’s hire,
Only to learn, dismayed,
That any wage I had asked of Life,
Life would have paid.
One of my personal favourite quotes of all time. Despite the hardships and endless challenges we face, it is important to embrace the “never say die” attitude and never let fate decide the course of your life. I literally memorize “Invictus” and “The Man in the Arena” word for word and they somehow guide me through my university days, constantly reminding myself that for every obstacles I face, they present themselves as learning opportunities and valuable life lessons.
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs; who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
Tribute to Nelson Mandela (18 July 1918 – 5 December 2013)