Tuesday, February 12, 2013


This story was told me by a relative in Goroka more than a decade ago. Somewhere in the mountains close to the border of Chimbu, Gulf and Eastern Highlands is a placed called Haia. The only way to get there is by plane or by foot, which would take a few days. There are no roads linking the station with the provincial centres close by.

There is an American missionary who has been involved in Bible translation work in Haia. He and his family have been there for more than a decade.
One of his sons left the family and went home to the US to study Applied Physics/Engineering.
When he graduated, he came to Haia and lived with his family for a while.

The father asked him how he fared with his learning and the son said: “Dad, I have graduated.”
The father said: “That’s fine. Now we will see if you have learnt anything in your three years at the university. You know we need a hydro generator to power up the houses and the clinic that your mother has been running for these many years. Your assignment will be to build a generator and power up the houses and the clinic.”

The son went to work. He enlisted help from the locals and worked on a generator. He then ran the wires from house to house and did all the tests.
After a few weeks the work was complete and he told the father that all was ready.

The whole community gathered on the special day and the father turned on the switch of the generator and the houses were lit up with the electricity coming from the generator.

The father looked at the son and gave him a pat, saying: “Ah, son. You have indeed graduated from university.”

My point: Try to be practical with what you learn.   

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