Some Mistakes Can't Be Undone: The Power Of An Open Mind

Last Update: August 10, 2021

The Power Of An Open Mind

Today I was reminded of an old story...

A man craved a cruise of the Caribbean and spent a lifetime saving every spare penny to achieve it.

I won't say his name, I'll just call him "he", "him" and "his". He could just as easily be a woman called "she", "her" and "her".

Over a long time, he managed to save up enough money, then spent almost all he had on booking the cruise.

He proudly spent his savings, then realised he hadn't enough left to afford food during the trip.

So when he left for the cruise, he took his own food.

Over a few weeks, he stockpiled snacks, then when the time came he made sandwiches and bought some fruit so that he wouldn't feel hungry when others were eating.

Cutting a long story short, he had a wonderful time, on a memorable trip.

Some days he was a little hungry but had enough to make it through the 5 days of the trip.

When disembarking at the end of the trip, the captain spotted him and asked: "Did you enjoy the meals?"

He smiled and said honestly: "Thank you for asking, captain, I hope they were wonderful. But all I could afford was the cruise. The meals were a luxury I couldn't afford."

The captain looked very confused and asked: "So didn't you eat in our dining room?"

"No," he replied. "I brought my own food along and ate in my cabin."

The captain looked shocked: "But the meals were all included in the price!

So all through the trip, he had given up on the great food included in the price of the cruise - all because he didn't know.

Eating onboard wouldn't have cost him a penny. Not even a tip was required.

For 5 days, he sat in his cabin to eat his own food, on his own, while the rest of the passengers were dining on lobster and steak.

All because he didn't know meals were included.

He had neither read the terms and conditions nor asked any questions.

Imagine how he felt when he realised how he had screwed up; he had saved up for so long!

All because of ONE mistake.

He hadn't read the details and was too proud to ask. His one mistake was that he had made assumptions,

Now... I believe that everybody makes decisions based on the best information they have at the time!

Unfortunately, many people make the mistake of looking at others, assuming things and not asking enough questions to be able to make a good decision.

I admit I've done this too at times.

I've also learned that having an open mind and asking questions leads to better decisions.

My favourite quote:

"Minds are like parachutes, they function best when open". - Thomas Dewar

This way of being takes work, but positive results are much more likely when pride is put in its place.

Some might like this story, some might not. In either case please feel free to say what you think!
:-)
Richard

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judymastro Premium Plus
What a super memorable story that I believed for a second ! I was wondering how come I didn't know such a cruise existing before I finished reading it.
A great way to think that WA is a cruise where we would not like to miss the meals with steak and lobster!

Judy
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richardgb Premium
It did really happen sometime before WW2! I don’t know the original story.
:-)
Richard
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Teasmade Premium
To be honest I thought this was like a parable, not a true story. How could anyone not know that food is included on a cruise?

Then, this morning, I was filling in a survey sent to me because I had, in the past, purchased a box of exquisitely decorated biscuit TILES for a friend. This would give me a chance to win £350. I thought it would be fun to answer lots of biscuit related questions! So I’m filling in this survey, which started with questions about what smartphones we have and I’m thinking ‘that’s a bit cheeky, they’re obviously going to sell some of the survey results to a tech company!’ But the techy questions went on and on, nothing asked about biscuit designs or flavours….
It suddenly dawned on me that I have a plastic TILE attached to my keys, a little piece of tech to help me if I lose them.
So I hadn’t even properly read the BIG print before starting the survey!
So, my apologies Richard, I now believe your story! 😳
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richardgb Premium
Hi Jenny... It’s an old story that I heard years ago and recalled the best I can.

It’s based on a real lady’s experience before WW2 when all info was on paper and communications were nothing close to the way they are today!
:-)
Richard
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Dhind1 Premium Plus
It is a valuable lesson. One that we usually do not learn until later in life. Though it should be taught at an early age.

"If you do not ask, you will not get".

I was able to impart this lesson to my nephew at a relatively young age. I think he was 10 or so.

We were in the Post office in Canada, and he was admiring some items they had in a display case. (A watch, I think). He was dismayed about the price because it was ~$50. Because it was the post office, he assumed the price was fixed and there was no room to bargain.

I assured him that it would not hurt to ask if there was any discount available, if we did not ask, he would not know.

We did ask and there was a discount available. He was amazed because he thought that there was no way the post office of Canada (a government institution) would have a discount available.

It never hurts to ask.
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richardgb Premium
Hi Alex
That’s a nice addition! Thsnk you.
Everything might be negotiable if we (find the courage to) ask.
:-)
Richard
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Jessiefido Premium Plus
Reading the small print can at times be a time consuming pain in the.....!!

But, it is always necessary to see where we stand.

If in doubt then always ask questions, no question is ever a silly one if you are unsure of the answer!

Thanks for the tale Richard and enjoy a fabulous day!
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richardgb Premium
Thanks for joining in Jessie!
:-)
Richard
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Magus Premium
Well said. That's why the WA platform is so great. It is designed for questions. I'd adjust Dewar's quote a little, though. Parachutes are ONLY useful when they open.

Great story too. The truth is people don't want to ask because they don't want to look stupid. Sadly it's often true that today's society shaped that way.

In my entire life, in the smallest conversations or any subject, I always asked questions. Often, it resulted in mocking, laughing at, or just condescending faces when I asked about "common" things that "everyone knows", and I didn't.

One of the most recent was "What's game of thrones?"

Luckily I'm old enough not to care when people think I'm from another planet, and I will keep asking if I don't understand something.

It's better to look stupid when asking questions than screw things up being ignorant.
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AdamReger Premium
Spot on. I can relate. People can be too much. A lot of times they don’t know the answer too.
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Magus Premium
Precisely. Perhaps that is why they can be a**holes to cover their own ignorance lol
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AdamReger Premium
Perhaps they have problems in bed. Lol
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richardgb Premium
Hi Andy
I think I agree. A bagged parachutes purpose is only to wait for a need to be opened. Thanks for your thoughtful response.
:-)
Richard
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