There was once a Millionaire who returned to his hometown after a long time, almost 18 years. One day, he decided to take a walk in the evening and after a long walk, he came to the riverside.

As he sat, he saw a villager rowing a small boat towards the banks, having caught quite a few big fish.

The Millionaire was impressed and asked the villager, “How long does it take you to catch so many fish?”

The villager replied, “Oh, just a short while.”
“Then why don’t you stay longer at sea and catch even more?”, asked the Millionaire as he felt advising.
“This is enough to feed my whole family,” the villager responded.

The Millionaire then asked, “So, what do you do for the rest of the day?”
The villager replied, “Well, I usually wake up early in the morning, go out to the river and catch a few fish, then go back and play with my kids. In the afternoon, I take a nap with my wife, and evening comes, I join my buddies in the village for a drink — we sometimes talk, play the guitar, sing and dance throughout the night.”

The Millionaire offered a suggestion to the villager.
“I am a successful entrepreneur and business consultant. I help startups to become Unicorn. Normally, I don’t advise in free, but since I belong to this town and I am impressed with your skills, I would help you to become a more successful person.”

The villager got curious so asked, “How?”

The Millionaire said, “You can start by fishing several hours longer every day. You can then sell the extra fish you catch. With the extra money, you can buy a bigger boat. With the additional income that larger boat will bring, before long you can buy a second boat, then a third one, and so on, until you have an entire fleet of fishing boats.”

As he was advising, he was proud of his own sharp thinking, he excitedly elaborated a grand scheme which could bring even bigger profits, “Then, instead of selling your catch to a middleman you’ll be able to sell your fish directly to the manufacturer or even open your own cannery. Eventually, you could control the product, processing, and distribution. You could leave this tiny coastal village and move to Mumbai, or possibly even Singapore, Dubai, London or New York City, where you could even further expand your enterprise.”

Having never thought of such things, the villager asked, “But how long will all these take?”

After a rapid mental calculation, the Millionaire pronounced, “Probably about 15-20 years, maybe less if you work really hard.”

“And then what, sir?” asked the Villager.

“Well, Here, the best part!” answered the businessman with a laugh. “When the time is right, you would sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.”

“Millions? Really? What would I do with it all?” asked the Villager in disbelief.

The Millionaire boasted, “Then you could happily retire with all the money you’ve made. You could move to a quaint coastal fishing village where you could sleep late, play with your grandchildren, watch cricket or football, and take siesta with your wife. You could stroll to the village in the evenings where you could talk to your friends all you want.”

The villager was puzzled, “Isn’t that what I am doing now?”


The moral of the story is: Know what really matters in life, and you may find that it is already much closer than you think.

4 thoughts on “The wisdom of simplicity

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