Then, the king of England was convinced, more troops would be needed to overcome the enemy in the wilderness. Sending his son to lead the way, the king wanted to make sure England was the victor, but along the way the collective leadership recognized that it would be quite helpful if they also had someone along who knew the terrain. That person would be George Washington.
From what I'm reading in Edward Lengel's book, General George Washington, it took some convincing to get George to sign on to another stint. George had resigned as a full colonel in the continental army, but just about everyone in the regular army outranked him, those rankings taking precedence. George had to negotiate for higher authority before agreeing to return.
But the part about this account that interests me is that when Washington wrote about the opportunity to his half-brother, he was intrigued by the opportunity to learn real military tactics from the regular army. This time around, men who knew what they were doing, men who had been trained in military rules and strategies, would be leading by example. George expressed an desire to take advantage of this rich opportunity to broaden his own scope of knowledge. He wanted to develop his own skills and improve as a leader. I'm not sure he would have signed on for another tour of duty if he couldn't learn something along the way.
There is something to be admired in that. There's also a little something for a fourth grader to understand:
- One should always be willing to try something new, even if you're not the star of the show (That's called humility.).
- Look for opportunities to learn new things and add to your skill set.
- Look for opportunities to experience new things. I read long ago that opportunities don't knock very loudly on a pillow.
- Don't be afraid to ask boldly for respect and consideration. Ask boldly, but with respect.
- Admit that you are not the best.
- The wilderness can be a beautiful thing to consider when out strolling with hundreds of your friends and dragging heavy cannon and provisions along behind you.