THE ORANGE VENDOR
Smart or Outsmart?
The story continues.
As the sun seemed to traverse on it descending journey, an occasional breath of cool breeze swept across the surroundings. The street in front of the market was by then busier than usual. Occasional mini busses transporting school children were evident and signs of children in the market were visible.
Some school boys were coming down the aisle,
Paul raised his wrist and looked at his dial,
The time was nearly thirty past three,
And those school boys were not on a spree.
They used the market as a short cut
And saw of oranges there was a glut.
Reaching in front the orange vendor,
They stopped for a while as to tender,
Silver coins in their pockets at first,
For some oranges that can quench their thirst.
What money they had no one was sure,
But for its worth they seemed to want more.
One of the boys said to the orange vendor, “Mister, how much for one orange?”
The orange vendor looked at the boys and asked with a smile, “How much money do you have, Sunny?”
“My name is not Sunny; I am Harry.” the boy said.
The vendor replied, “So you are the Harry Potter!”
The other boys burst into laughter.
Harry started to stutter and shouted “No, mister, I am just Harry.”
The orange vendor then said to the boys,
“If you boys pay me just one dollar,
You will have six oranges as an offer.”
“Six oranges!” the second boy exclaimed.
The third boy intervened and pointed out, “That means we will have two oranges each. Wow!”
Harry then told the other boys, “Check your pockets and let us make up one dollar.”
Paul started to peel an orange in anticipation of a sale from the three school boys.
Altogether the three boys, Harry, Matthew and Richard could only uncover seventy-five cents, that is, one silver piece each.
‘Mister” said Harry, “We only have 3 twenty-five cents pieces. That is all we have. Please give us the 6 oranges;” he beseeched the orange vendor.
The orange vendor then asked with a smile, “Let me see the money.”
Harry eagerly gave the three coins to the vendor who then quickly put them in the cash box.
“You see, boys,” explained the vendor, “with these three coins, I will not be able to give you six oranges” he continued.
“Oh no, mister” the three boys shouted in disappointment.
“Calm down,” the vendor said. He then continued,
“Boys, to each one of you,
I will give only two.”
The boys looked at each other and smiled.
The vendor them peeled the rest of the oranges, cut them in halves and put two each in a bag which he gave the three boys.
Very happy indeed were the school boys that with twenty-five cents they could get two oranges each to quench their thirst.
On their way out of the market, Harry said to the Matthew and Richard, “You see, we outsmart the orange man.”
“No” replied Richard, “the man felt sorry for we.”
In the market, Tony was looking on at the boys while they were bargaining with Paul. After the boys left, he enquired from Paul, “Why you took the money from the poor school children? Why you did not give them for free?”
“Ah stupid or wha’?” said Paul.
Tony replied, “You think you smart or wha’!”
Copyright © Frank Ramtahal 2011