Wait for windfalls — Shou Zhu Dai Tu

(Image is from internet 守株待兔)

During the warring states period of ancient China, a farmer in the state Song worked very hard in his field every day.  There was a tree stump at the edge of the field. He used to rest on it when he was tired.

One day, when the farmer was working in the field, a hare ran out of the nearby grass. The hare was shocked when it saw a human, so it tried to dash out of the field. Suddenly, it bumped into the stump, broke its neck, and died.  The farmer happily picked up the hare and took it home to his wife, who cooked a delicious meat meal.

On the second day, the farmer went to his field as usual. But he did not work as hard as before.  After every ten to twenty minutes, he would glance in the grass and heed any noise around, just wishing for another hare to bump into the stump.  In this way, he worked half-heartedly for the whole day, leaving most of his field un-hoed. But there was no hare came out.

On the third day, he had no intention to hoe at all. Putting his tools aside, he sat in the field, just waiting for another hare to knock into the stump.  Sure enough, he spent his day in vain.

Thereafter, day after day, the farmer sat in his field and waited for the hare.  However, there was no more hare appeared. The weeds in his field soon outgrew his crops, and he also became a laughingstock of the state Song.


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