Monday, 22 October 2007

Duck soup

When you need to talk with many, don’t forget that your words get thinner as they pass from person to person, until there is nothing left. Likewise, when you give to everybody do not expect much from individuals. This reminds me of a story:

They say that Mullah Nasreddin, the shameless thief of wisdom and jester of the kings, was, once upon a time, a poor but hospitable man, humble teacher in the town of Aksehir.

One afternoon a man from Horto - one of his several native villages - paid visit to him and brought a fat duck as a present. The Mullah was exceedingly happy. Without delay he plucked the duck and prepared a delicious soup, which he shared with his guest.

The day after, another man came to see the Hodja. He brought no present but he explained: "I am the brother of the man who offered you the duck."

"Be welcome" said Nasreddin and invited him to share dinner.

Another day passed and another empty-handed visitor knocked at the door. "May you only know youth, prosperity and good health" he said, "I am the cousin of the brother of the man who brought you the duck." The Hodja asked him in and offered him hospitality.

Now it happens that one week after that, yet another man came to say: "Be blessed Hodja, I am the neighbour of the cousin of the brother of the man who brought you the duck, and I bring you more greetings".

Nasreddin sat him at the guest table and they had a pleasant chat while dinner was prepared. Then, he carried to the table a big pot of boiling water from which he served a large bowl for the visitor.

"What is this, Hodja?" exclaimed the man.
"This, my friend, is the soup of the soup, of the soup, of the soup, of the duck."

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