About the Book
Author: Derek J. Ambrose
Genre: Biography / Inspirational
The journey of an ordinary person with learning constraints, disease affected rising to the top of personal and academic achievement, against considerable odds. A story of persistence, commitment and dedication.
The Author is one of Australia’s many achievers. His achievements in academia and social are to be admired considering the lowly start to life. He has achieved at the highest academic, business and social levels engaging with many diversities.
This period was the worst of our lives, debt collectors ringing, the bank threatening bankruptcy, parents not talking to us, and just complete failure. We were renting in Canberra and could only just pay the rent and provide for our children. This was a most depressing time, and one where we were in no position to make decisions. I had struggled to get work and then there was an opportunity to go to Queensland and open up a business for a South Australian firm. We both saw this as a fresh start and in this particular situation I had found a mentor who provided great advice and assistance at the time, although I did not realise that I would outgrow him and become a mentor myself in the future. I still remember a couple of his favourite sayings such as, “It’s the fifteenth round and we are still standing,” and “You look to me like a person who knows how many pies go to a bottle of sauce.” Those were comforting words and the friendship was creative and very supportive, something that I desperately needed at that stage.
Whilst engaging in the finance brokerage industry, I had hooked up with a person who will remain nameless, but since the motel days both he and I were in partnership in a mortgage brokerage firm. I had signed a joint lease agreement for a small office rent and, as usual, I was left with the debt when my partner was unable to make business pay. So now we had arrived in Queensland without very much to our names, looking to start the new business, and now I was served with a demand for seven thousand dollars of back rent, and no means to pay it. I attended court to defend the judgement on my own. The judge awarded the judgement against me, and so now I had a recorded debt and was still fighting the bank to prevent bankruptcy. What was worse was the area that we had moved into; the creditor who was petitioning me for the judgement lived over the back fence. No matter what we did we couldn’t take a trick. What could happen to us next? I guess the funny thing was that he could keep an eye on us!
So we soldiered on with trying to establish a business, the children went to school, and we were fighting off the creditors on a weekly basis and trying to avoid bankruptcy when we hit rock bottom and had our car repossessed. Now we were faced with no money, no transport, struggling to feed our children and no prospects of work. How far we had fallen, so far it’s unbelievable. We just contracted into our own little world and were like frightened caged animals, too scared to do anything and too bashed to join mainstream life. We retreated, both unemployed, to each other and did nothing. The feeling of defeat emanated throughout both of us. We were in total despair and just about anything that could help us would be a blessing. It was very interesting to note that no one offered us a chance to start afresh, nor did anyone create an opportunity for us.