Mulla Nasrudin was once employed as an apple-picker. After a whole day of back-breaking work, his boss — a miser — refused to pay the agreed salary.

‘I have no money to offer you, but come back tomorrow and do another day’s work and you may eat as many apples as you like.’

The Mulla returned the next day and went on diligently picking fruit from the trees. At sunset he climbed the tallest tree and began to eat apples with such relish that the miser became alarmed.

‘Why not eat from the lower branches?’ he shouted from the ground.

‘I’m starting from the top and working my way down,’ called Nasrudin. ‘With almost a whole orchard of apples to eat, I’ll need to be systematic.’

The World of Nasrudin Idries Shah, Octagon Press

Apple orchard

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