Now as you are gathered all around and sitting comfortably let me tell you of one boys dream and how his vision of the future was realised, and this story reminds me we can all achieve our vision or goals can’t we, we can you know -
Small bucket and shovel in hand – from a distance he heard his father shout – stop playing in the sand you will never become anything in this life unless you study more and plan for a future, but Ferdi while listening to his father was concentrating all the time as he dug further into the sand and his mind wandered as each glistening piece of the golden sand slipped through his fingers and in the background he could hear the sea crashing and rolling up on the shore the sound of this sending him deeper into trance while focussing on the future and a vision of what could be.
With large bucket and shovel at hand on 25 April 1859 the first blow of the pickaxe was given by Ferdi at Port Said. During the following ten years, Ferdi had to overcome the continuing opposition of the British government preventing the Sultan from approving the construction of the passage in the sand and at one stage, he even had to seek the support of his cousin, Empress Eugenie to persuade the Emperor Napoleon to act as arbitrator in the disputes. Finally, on 17 November 1869, the canal was officially opened by the Ismail Pasha.
Ferdi could still with a wry smile on his face remember his father’s shouted words from years gone by when playing on the beach you will never become anything in this life – but now the vision has come through and his self belief finally realised he had dug through the sand to create the Suez Canal.