Monday, April 02, 2007


One day, the father of a very wealthy family took his son on a trip to the country with the express purpose of showing him how poor people live. They spent a couple of days and nights on the farm of what would be considered a very poor family. On their return from their trip, the father asked his son, "How was the trip?" "It was great, Dad." "Did you see how poor people live?" the father asked. "Oh yeah," said the son."So, tell me, what did you learn from the trip?" asked the father. The son answered: "I saw that we have one dog and they had four. We have a pool that reaches to the middle of our garden and they have a creek that has no end. We have imported lanterns in our garden and they have the stars at night. Our patio reaches to the front yard and they have the whole horizon. We have a small piece of land to live on and they have fields that go beyond our sight. We have servants who serve us, but they serve others. We buy our food, but they grow theirs. We have walls around our property to protect us, they have friends to protect them." The boy's father was speechless. Then his son added, "Thanks Dad for showing me how poor we are."

I have received this same email several times. I keep it for a while, usually until I do a big email cleanup. At times I wonder if I keep it to justify my life style or to remind me how lucky I am. So when I got it again, I decided to figure it out.

Poor means to have little or no wealth and few or no possessions... We are poor and I mean financially poor. We live from pay check to pay check and some weeks that check is stretched mighty thin.

On the other hand we aren't poor. We have no debt. The house (when it is done) is paid for. We have a 2005 truck and a 2000 car which are paid for. We have trappings. I have four spinning wheels. The man loves his 50 inch and 27 inch HDTV flat screens, the kids have Xbox 360 and DS’s and walk around in name brand sneakers and clothes.

There is no way I will see England or France. Our vacations have been to see my daughter finish basic training in SC and leave for Iraq from MS or to the MDS&W and Rhinebeck. The same daughter did send us to PR last summer which was great.

It is my choice not to work. It would give us more money, but we would use it to buy the food that I now grow and can or freeze. The man could get a better paying job, but he would be gone an extra 3-4 hours a day and I love having him around. I miss him when he is gone.

I think our’s is a checks and balances life style. We work hard enough to get some of what we want, but not so hard that we lose sight of what is important. We have everything we need and most of what we want. We don’t have tons of clothes, some of which we won’t ever wear but we have enough that we don’t walk around naked. We don’t have a boat or a summer home, but we do have the luxury of being able to be girl/boy scout leaders, soccer coaches, volunteers, etc instead of having to work overtime to pay for the boat/ 2nd home. We have the time to appreciate what we do have.

So my muscles are aching today but yesterday I spent the whole day with the man building a chicken coop. So menial yet so satifying. So, I guess I should keep it just to remind me that we indeed are very wealthy. Wealthy-rich, marked by abundance, well supplied.

1 comment:

debey said...

You, my friend, are a VERY wealthy woman!!!you have the luxury, of a hubby/man as A ''CARPENTER'' hubby & me, we don't ''project build (ANYTHING)
well,, .........

Where's the pic's, of the coop????????