Anecdote

The following is an anecdote from a book I’m reading about mood disorders:

… a man is walking a very long road from one village to another. At the outskirts of the new village he encountered a farmer laboring in his field, cutting hay. He said to the farmer, “I have walked a great distance to come to this village of yours. I have left my village looking for a new home, perhaps I will find it here. Tell me, how are the people in this village? What kind of people are they?” The man in the field thought a moment, then asked, “What were the people like in the village you came from?” The traveler replied, “They were uncaring, self-absorbed, cynical and unfriendly. That’s why I left.” The farmer paused before replying and then said, “I think that’s how you’ll find the people here, too.” The traveler replied, “In that case, I’ll just move on and look somewhere else.” A couple of days later, the farmer was again out in his field when another man approached him and said, “My village was destroyed and the people scattered. I am looking to find myself a new home, perhaps in this village. Can you tell me, how are the people in this village? What kind of people are they?” The farmer asked, “What were the people like in your village?” The traveler 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.”

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