We had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Meseret Yohannes Asfha. Born in 1939 in Tsazega, his entire life he has been working as a mechanic and he still is at the age of 74. It is amazing how in this stage of his life he is still eagers to work and doing what he loves.
-I would like to thank you for coming here today and I guess we can start our interview now. Can you tell us a bit of your early adventures?
I moved to Asmara from my village when I was in 4th grade and I crushed with my uncles for a while. Soon after I started working at a garage as a part time job. Where they gave me a place in which I could stay… so I was literally living and working in the garage. The place use to be run by Italians so they sent me to the Italian school and on the top of that I learned a lot of skills. I was making 7 Birr per week…. Quite a lot of money for that time.
-How did you ever think of being a mechanic?
I wouldn’t know honestly. It was just an instant instinct that I had as I was a young man looking for something to keep me busy. And with time my savings started to grow so I just went with the flow, besides it thought me a lot of a life time talents that I developed with the interest that I have.
-What about your life style?
I worked so hard that I made enough to move my whole family from my village to Asmara. I was able to send my younger siblings to school and assist my parents. I actually was good at managing my hard earned incomes very wisely.
-But weren’t you young? Weren’t you just tempted to be less responsible and just be a youngster?
(Laughs) well… Yeah a lot of times just like any other teenager. Luckily enough I was less of a city boy so I wasn’t really missing anything I wouldn’t know.
-Did you have any spare times?
I am not a very social person. In my free time I practice my skills. Especially when I was young I was eager to know more, I never thought there was an end to the knowledge.
-What do you think is the source of your success?
Mostly the blessing of my parents, it was there throughout my entire life.
-When did you get married?
Uh, a long time ago. In 1959, I was young on my booths of discovering life. My wife passed away but the time we spent together it was definitely the best I ever had. I m blessed with twelve kids. Two of them passed away. Four of my kids followed in my steps and have garages of their own.
-You spend a lot of time with young people in your garage, how does that make you feel?
Every time I see them working I m reminded the old days and I can’t help but smile. I wish I could see these kids succeed as much as I did or even more. I always remind them to work hard when they are still young because that is the core of our carrier.
-we are gong to stop here for today even though we know we have to learn more form you and I hope we will have this chance in the future.