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Old 01-09-2010, 07:03 PM   #1
BeTePoK
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The wooden bowl

The Wooden Bowl

A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four-year-old grandson.
The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered

The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and
failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor.
When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess.
'We must do something about father,' said the son.
'I've had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor.'

So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner.
There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner.
Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl.

When the family glanced in Grandfather's direction, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat alone.
Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food.

The four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor.
He asked the child sweetly, 'What are you making?' Just as sweetly, the boy responded,
'Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and Mama to eat your food in when I grow up.
' The four-year-old smiled and went back to work.

The words so struck the parents so that they were speechless. Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done.

That evening the husband took Grandfather's hand and gently led him back to the family table.
For the remainder of his days he ate every meal with the family. And for some reason,
neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
On a positive note, I've learned that, no matter what happens, how bad it seems today, life does go on, and it will be better tomorrow.

I've learned that you can tell a lot about a person by the way he/she handles four things:
a rainy day, the elderly, lost luggage, and tangled Christmas tree lights.

I've learned that making a 'living' is not the same thing as making a 'life..'

I've learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance.

I've learned that you shouldn't go through life with a catcher's mitt on both hands.You need to be able to throw something back sometimes.

I've learned that if you pursue happiness, it will elude you
But, if you focus on your family, your friends, the needs of others,
your work and doing the very best you can, happiness will find you

I've learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision.

I've learned that even when I have pains, I don't have to be one.

I've learned that every day, you should reach out and touch someone.

People love that human touch -- holding hands, a warm hug, or just a friendly pat on the back.

I've learned that I still have a lot to learn.

I've learned that you should pass this on to everyone you care about. I just did.

*********************

This is to all of you who
mean something to me,
and those I will meet,
I pray for your happiness.

The Candle Of Love, Hope & Friendship
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Old 01-09-2010, 07:08 PM   #2
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And I thought you were just here to buy 500's and 505's

Nice stuff - thanks for sharing
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Old 01-09-2010, 07:37 PM   #3
MickeyC
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Very moving. Thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-09-2010, 07:46 PM   #4
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BeTePoK, that was a beautiful lesson and story. Thank you for sharing.

"I've learned that I still have a lot to learn."
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Old 01-09-2010, 08:43 PM   #5
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Thank you. This was exactly what I needed to hear this morning. And I feel a whole lot better for it.

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Old 01-09-2010, 09:30 PM   #6
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You are welcome
I like stories like this and always try to share it with as much people as possible
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Old 01-09-2010, 09:43 PM   #7
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That's a pearl of wisdom. A necklace of those will protect you through life...
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Old 01-09-2010, 10:37 PM   #8
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The wooden bowl story appears in

"Grandma! Grandpa! Write Stories to Me!" (also titled "A Grandpa's Notebook")
by Meyer Moldeven

but without the schmaltzy ending tacked on.

In the book, the wooden bowl story is followed by a similarly themed story:

--------------------------------

In many villages of old Japan, the townsfolk suffered deeply and, often, the
extremes of hunger and cold. It was vital to the survival of the able- bodied
that those who were in their final hours of life be taken to the nearby
foothills and left there to die. This sorrowful task belonged to the senior
son.

So it was, indeed, that a dutiful senior son, at the appropriate time imposed
by illness and tradition, wrapped his dying mother in the family blanket
reserved for such sad occasions. He lifted her gently, cradled her in his
arms, and made his way to a sheltered place among the nearby foothills'
rocks and underbrush.

Lowering his mother to the ground, he kneeled beside her and tenderly
made his final good-bye. She listened silently, breathing shallow, eyes
closed. Finally, he stood, bowed deeply and, tears in his eyes, turned to
leave.

'Wait, my son.' Her voice was barely a whisper. 'Do not forget the blanket.
The day will come when it will be needed for another and, in time, for you.'

------------------------------

If you want to read these tales and others, "Grandpa's Notebook" is a free ebook in various formats, available from:

http://www.gutenberg.org/etext/2737

Last edited by RCR; 01-09-2010 at 10:42 PM. Reason: clarify
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Old 01-09-2010, 10:54 PM   #9
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Also, A Grandpa's Notebook is at manybooks.com.
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