Story 17

I noticed an Arab of the desert sitting in a company jewellers at Bosrah and narrating stories to them. He
said: ‘I had once lost my road in the desert and consumed all my provisions. I considered that I must perish
when I suddenly caught sight of a bag full of pearls and I shall never forget the joy and ecstasy I felt on thinking they might be parched grain nor the bitterness and despair when I discovered them to be pearls.’

In a dry desert and among moving sand
It is the same to a thirsty man whether he has pearls or shells in his mouth.

When a man has no provisions and his strength is exhausted
It matters not whether his girdle is adorned with pearls or potsherds.