One day the Hodja bought a donkey from the market and started homewards, lead in hand, his head full of pleasant thoughts regarding his purchase.

Two thieves had been following him all the time. Somewhere on the way, one of them untied the lead from the donkey and tied it around his friend's neck, disappearing together with the donkey.

When the Hodja arrived at his house, he turned around, and to his amazement saw that he was leading a ruffian instead of his beautiful donkey. "Hey, who are you?" he cried. "What have you done with my donkey?"

"Have pity on me, Hodja Effendi," replied the ruffian, "I have been very foolish on one occasion many years ago. You see, I wronged my mother and she put a curse upon me that turned me into a donkey. A pious gentleman such as you becoming my master, I am transformed back into a man again. God bless you!" So saying, he kissed Nesreddin Hodja's hands and thanked him for his release.

The kindly Hodja untied the man and said, "Now, you be off and never hurt your mother's feelings again."

The next day, Hodja was back at the market looking for another likely donkey. What should he see but the same animal, on sale again! Approaching, he bent down and whispered into the donkey's ear: "You know, some people will never learn! I can see that you didn't heed my advice!"

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