The day before the beginning of the fasting month of Ramadan, Nasreddin Hodja thought:

Instead of going to the trouble of asking people the exact date when it is more than likely they won't know it, I shall keep my own calendar. When 30 days are over, I shall know for sure that the month of Ramadan is also at an end and that Bairam has arrived.

Accordingly, he took out an earthen pot and placed it on a shelf. Next day he put a pebble into it, and went on doing so every morning. The Hodja's naughty son one day observed his performance, and when he was himself unobserved, added a few handfuls of pebbles to his father's hoard.

It happened that just a few days before Bairam, friends asked Nasreddin Hodja the day of the month.

"If you wait for a few minutes," he said, "i will tell you the exact date."

He went into his house, took the pot down from the shelf, emptied it on the floor and began to count the pebbles, each one supposed to represent one day of Ramadan. There were exactly 120 pebbles, which appeared incredible as a lunar month has no more than 30 days. Returning to his friends, he said:

Today is the 45th day of Ramadan." When he saw that they were staring at him with stupefaction, he added: "Mind you, I have tried to be more than fair. If I were to tell you the correct number of the pebbles in the pot, today would be the 120th day of Ramadan!"

<<  previous     |     next  >>

Hodja Tales home
Back to e-Citadel main page