What most successfull businessman will never admit to – it was all down to luck!

August 11, 2017

I’ve been to the site at least six times since work was completed a couple of days ago. On my first occasion when I stood there all alone….I gave myself a pat for a job well done! On the second occasion when I had difficulty sleeping I drove there at three in the morning and on that very occasion I wished there was another me to give myself a pat. And on the third occasion…I wished there was three of me to give myself a pat. So on and so forth.

I know where all this is likely to go next….if I don’t check myself. I am going to start mythologizing how I pulled off a miracle. May even throw in a seat on your pants knife fight story as well to spice things up and of course where would we all be without that trite Hollywood ending that even promises redemption only to end happily thereafter.

Truth is if I really had to make an effort to be truthful….a large part of the success story had to do with luck!

I am sorry, I know that is what many of you were not expecting. But it is what it is. Really!

I know this would probably mean such an important milestone in my life will probably never be a page turner….but at least it would serve to keep my head small and both my feet firmly planted on the good earth.

Sorry for the spoiler!


‘Next time when you think you have every right to laugh at some poor sod that didn’t make it to the other side safely and even earn the right to say, ‘phew!’

Think again. As maybe he didn’t have the good fortune that came your way to make it all come together.

This is a story about accidental encounters that all added up to finally end well…..I want so much to claim the right to say skill played a preponderant role. But in all honesty this recount has to be accurate as it serves as a farmer log.

Fidelity. Accuracy and factual accounts is key if the log is to serve for future farmers who may come after me.

I started my replanting project on the 15th of June 2017. The contractor wasn’t my first choice. I had to go with him despite knowing this was his first time doing such work only because my first choice had copped out due to another project that had overrun.

On the day I broke ground. It rained cats and dogs. Which is the worst possible omen for a replant. As one always wishes for dry weather. But the rain did help considerably to soften the soil which allowed the trees to be uprooted completely. I subsequently found out the contractor I had engaged despite lacking the experience was someone who was very eager and most enthuistic to learn more about the plantation trade. So he took orders religiously and even regarded me as a sort of guru and that went a long way to ensure quality and discipline which would have otherwise been difficult to enforce with amateurs.

After he had finished felling and chipping and extracting all the roots. My first choice contractor phoned me up and told me he was free….but there was one condition. He could only be on site on the 26th July.

I let the first guy go. And decided to wait it out. That was just around the time when the weather started to change and it was hot as hell every day for the next twenty three straight days without even a drop of rain.

I cannot begin to explain the importance of this freak occurrence as it means the cellulose material from the felled trees will shrink as much as 70% as the sun desiccates it – this shrinkage would be critical in disposing the material without the need to provision extra trenches….I calculated four would be enough combined with the boundary line. I wish I could say it was spot on! But it was actually an epic mistake…I had omitted to compensate for the moisture in the cellulose material…it had been set to zero…I would have needed at least three more trenches….five would be better. But since the felled material had shrunk so much due to the prolonged and unexpected drought….four was very good to go.

Only because the weather went my way….it compensated for my epic error in calculation….I must have been tired to have made such a simple error of computation.

When my first choice contractor broke ground on the 27th July. We had two weeks of clear and sunny weather. Work progressed smoothly and I when it was completed on 9th August…the rains started again…it’s been raining every single day since then.

I tied off just in the nick of time.

I think the moral of the story is one simply needs to look at it honestly…it takes considerable effort to be honest with oneself…..recently a farmer came to me and expressed in a tone approaching a mix of lamentation and admiration…it is true what they say about you…you are truly the world’s greatest farmer….I wish I had your foresight, cool headedness and acumen to tie off my replant on time.

The consequence of his delay is devastating. As he has to wait for whole entire year before he can replant his seedlings….he has missed the boat!

I told this man, ‘I was just very lucky…it had nothing do with being a world’s greatest farmer….one day it will all work out…this delay may not be such a bad thing.’

That is the truth…there is no great planter of lore. I just made it all up in my head….Heng lah!’

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