even idiots can be right at times

This post was written by admin on July 7, 2010
Posted Under: true story

My family spent the summer of 1960 in Geneva Switzerland. The apartment we rented for the summer overlooked Lake Geneva and one could see Mont Blanc from the same window too.

We had great time walking by the lake and took lots of photos. We would drive for day trips to France on the other side in Lake Leman (the French name for Lake Geneva – go figure).

The local delicacy was filette de perche. And the swimming was fantastic…

Anyway that’s all great memories for me but nothing to do with the story:

That summer a cult of some kind had predicted that on a certain day the world would end in a flood and the only people who would survive would be their followers (about thirty in total)  who were camped on Mont Blanc. Of course no one outside Geneva heard about these crazies (after all there are all sorts of idiots predicting the end of the world at all time).

But the cult was big funny news in Geneva and for the week before the predicted end of times flood the TV news kept talking about it and people were laughing at the idiots. As I mentioned we could see the mountain top which was snow covered even in August. Si we looked out toward the place the cult was encamped and laughed at them. Made no sense to stay on the mountain rather than swim in the lake…

So eventually the allotted day came. The world was to end at mid day.

That morning started as a very sunny day. But by ten a storm came by and soon it was raining.

And the rains intensified. By eleven it was one of the biggest downpours I have ever seen (the strongest in my first thirteen years – my age at the time). It was raining so hard that we could hardly see the lake less than fifty meters away from us, let alone Mont Blanc ten twenty kilometers away.

As I mentioned, I was only thirteen. As it rained harder and harder. I came to think, “Perhaps they are onto something.”

Soon midday came and passed and the world was still there. The lake had not flooded. There were cars driving in the street between our apartment and the lake.

And time still moved forward inexorably. Slowly the rain slowed down.

By two it was sunny again. We were laughing again and in time the cult members had to climb down back to their homes.

***

They asked Mullah Nasrudin the timing of Akhar-E-Zaman (end of time). Nasrudin replied which one the small or large end of times.

They said, “What do you mean? We only know of one end of times.”

Nasrudin replied, “The small end of times is when my wife dies and the large one is when I die!”

***

I laughed at the above Nasrudin story when I first heard it more than fifty years ago, but I still don’t get. I laughed because everyone else laughed.

Oh well.

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