TO BE ON THE SAFE SIDE
When Nasreddin was still a young boy, his mother was one day going out on a picnic with some neighbors. Just before leaving, she said:
"Listen to me, Nasreddin, there is plenty of food in the house. You can have your lunch when you feel like it. You may play with your friends just outside the house. But mind you, have your eyes always on the door and whatever happens, don't leave it for a moment."
Young Nasreddin had had his lunch and was drowsing, sitting with his back against the door. His friends, not being as fortunate as Nasreddin, were still being kept in by their elders.
He may have been sitting there for five minutes or five hours when, on opening his eyes, he saw his brother-in-law standing before him with a quizzical expression on his face. Not having heard the question, but realizing that some sort of reply was expected of him, Nasreddin said, "Mother is out!"
"Well, go and tell her that we intend to pay her a visit this evening."
His brother-in-law gone, Nasreddin was now in a predicament. He had his orders forbidding him to leave the door even for a moment. On the other hand, he had been instructed to inform his mother of the impending visit. What should he do?
Finally he got up, opened the door. Hanging onto it and kicking it with all his might, he managed to pull it off its hinges. When he had regained his breath, he shouldered the door and thus burdened, arrived at the picnic grounds.
His mother, on seeing him, was dumbfounded. "Nasreddin! What have you been up to again?" she cried. "What have you done to that door?!"
"Well, mother, I've come to tell you that my sister will be visiting us tonight. And to be on the safe side, I brought along the door you told me to mind!"