Do we find happiness somewhere else or do we bring it with us?
We visited Ted and Barb Griffin today — One of Jacob’s favorite Central Junior High School teachers, now living a happy life in retirement; what a great couple. Good, down-to-earth, joyful people, just enjoying what life brings them. Ted projects an earthy look and genuine smile that’s framed by his long white bushy beard. I don’t know why, but he reminds me of the farmer in one of my favorite old folktales: The Farmer and The Traveler
A man was walking a very long road from one village to another.
As he approached the village, he encountered a farmer who was cutting hay. He said to the farmer, “I’ve walked a great distance to come here. I’ve left my village looking for a new home, perhaps I’ll find it in this village. Can you tell me, what are the people here like?”
The man in the field thought for a moment before replying, then asked, “What were the people like in the village you came from?”
The traveller replied, “They were uncaring, self-absorbed, cynical and unfriendly. That’s why I left.”
The farmer paused, and then said, “I think that’s how you’ll find the people here, too.”
The traveller replied, “In that case, I’ll just move on and look somewhere else.”
Later, a different man came along and said, “My village was destroyed and the people scattered. I’m looking to find myself a new home, perhaps in this village. Can you tell me, what are the people here like?”
The farmer asked, “What were the people like in the village you came from?”
The traveller replied, “They were wonderful people. Loving, close, helpful, and I will miss them terribly.”
The farmer said, “I think that’s how you’ll find the people here, too.”
Thanks Barb and Ted.