Mieh w Mieh - Stories - Dedication & Loyalty

Toufic Bou Baba (Abou Georges), a man in his seventies now, lives in Mieh w Mieh with his wife, sons and daughter's families, and his grandchildren. He is a former soldier of the Lebanese Army, and has a good story about human being, dedication and loyalty, that he would like to share with us. In the next section, we will be telling the story, and whenever we see the letter “I”, it refers to Abou Georges telling the story:

I joined the army in 1956 as a private soldier, then few years later, I was promoted to chief. In 1960, I was assigned to Ryaq Airbase in the Bekaa Valley, where I was responsible for the training of the new soldiers joining the army.

Among the trainees, one soldier was so ambitious, always trying to get promoted in the army. In order to do that, this soldier had to study a lot, late hours after the hard training every day. But this soldier was a weak link among his colleagues in the regiment, where they were always trying to make fun of him, and try to break him down, disturbed him always, especially at night, and not giving him the time or the chance to study, or to fulfill his dreams.

When I saw that, I realized that this soldier needs help, I tried by all means to give him the chance. So I was giving him some space to study, and I made it clear for his colleague that any one disturbing him will be punished. I was always protecting him from his colleagues, and always encouraging him especially when he felt disappointed or depressed, by telling him:

Whom that wants to go higher, must spend a lot of nights studying, or in Arabic:

من جد وجد ومن زرع حصد

  من طلب العلى سهر الليالي

The time goes on, and this soldier took the exams at that time (Lebanese Baccalaureate), and then he managed to join the school of officers, after he successfully passed all the required exams.

Since that time, years passed, and I did not see, or hear about this soldier.

10 years later, I was still serving in Ryad Airport. One day, one of my cousins from Mieh w Mieh, which was a soldier, came to me to Ryaq to the air base, and told me that he wants to move from one place to another place, such as he wants to move from Ablah base to Baalbeck base. My cousin asked me, regarding my seniority in the army, whether I knew someone that may help in moving him, since usually when you want to move from one place to the other in the Lebanese army, you need a help which we call “Wasta”.

I told my cousin that I do not know anybody in Baalbeck, but I will call anyway, and ask them to accept your move.  I called the base in Baalbeck, and told them I want to speak with the responsible officer in Baalbeck. In Baalbeck, the soldier trying to connect me to his officer, told the officer that a soldier called Toufic Bou Saba wants to talk to him. Hearing my name, the officer, with a rank of Captain, told the soldier to put me through, but not to tell me his name. So they connected me to the Captain, and when he was on line, the first words he told me:

The one that teaches me a word, his slave I am. Or in Arabic, the saying:

من علمني حرفا                     كنت له عبدا

And then he introduced himself telling me that he is the soldier that I helped, and he is now a Captain, and that he is responsible for the base in Baalbeck. He told me that I am his teacher, and his master, and told me to ask whatever I need, and he will do it for me. And that is what happened, he helped me, and we were always in contact since that time.

Moral of the story:

Do good, even if it is not in the right place, nothing good will be lost, and always it will come back to you. As the Arabic saying:

             ازرع جميلا ولو في غير موضعه                 لا يضيع جميل اينما زرع

Hope this was a good story for you, and always try to help other people, especially the weakest.

Toufic Bou Saba – 08 March 2007

Translated to English by Charles Bou Saba.

Mieh w Mieh

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