Waiting on Mandela

Most of us have ways of giving ourselves a lift out of hard times, down periods. My history has been to read about or watch films about extraordinary people or life experiences that required enormous amounts of courage to endure.

Once, many years ago, when tucked away in seclusion not long after the shooting, I watched Philadelphia and Schindler’s List in a single day. Crazy? For some, maybe. But if you’re not inspired by the mind boggling courage in both those films I feel sorry for you.

Today I am waiting for a documentary on Nelson Mandela to arrive. I can think of few people more inspiring than Mr. Mandela. The world is filled with people who talk tough when they are, in truth, anything but. Dick Cheney, for example, has the courage of a tree stump.

The really tough folks in life don’t have to say a word. They are, like my closest friend Michael (as tough as anyone I’ve ever known), proof that actions speak louder than words.

And so as the clouds outside life and the sun enters the day, I’m waiting on Mandela. I already know he is well worth the wait.