It was April and an Aboriginal Tribe in a remote part of Northern Australia asked their new elder if
the coming winter was going to be cold or mild.
Since he was an elder in a modern community he had never been taught the old secrets. When
he looked at the sky he couldn't tell what the winter was going to be like. Nevertheless, to be on
the safe side, he told his tribe that the winter was indeed going to be cold and that the members
of the tribe should collect firewood to be prepared.
Being a practical leader, after several days he had an idea. He walked out to the telephone booth
on the highway, called the Bureau of Meteorology and asked, "Is the coming winter in this area
going to be cold?"
The meteorologist responded, "It looks like this winter is going to be quite cold."
So the elder went back to his people and told them to collect even more wood in order to be
A week later he called the Bureau of Meteorology again. "Does it still look like it is going to be a
very cold winter?" The meteorologist again replied, "Yes, it's going to be a very cold winter."
The elder again went back to his community and ordered them to collect every scrap of firewood
they could find.
Two weeks later the elder called the Bureau again. "Are you absolutely sure that the winter is
going to be very cold?" he asked.
"Absolutely," the man replied. "It's looking more and more like it is going to be one of the coldest
"How can you be so sure?" the elder asked.
The weatherman replied, "There are reports that the Aborigines are collecting firewood like crazy,
and that's always a sure sign."