Thursday, 1 October 2009

MULTIPLY United Friends Challenge #184: Fotune favours Fools

Caffeinatedjo's Challenge

Take any familiar proverb/saying, such as:

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
People in glass houses should not throw stones.

Then write either a story about your choice or write what it means to you.

Please Note: You DO NOT have to use the phrase/saying in your piece.

Perhaps a small explanation. We have a saying in German which is a bit of a favourite of mine - sounds so good "Der dümmste Bauer hat die dicksten Kartoffeln" which translated means "the most stupid farmer has the biggest potatoes". I had to search and it seems in English it would be "Fortune favours Fools".

My first acquaintance with Cedric was when I started school as a six year old. It was obvious in the first year that Cedric was perhaps not as quick to understand things as the rest of the class. We were all reading the second book about the adventures of Janet and John and poor Cedric was still studying the developments of the cat sitting on the mat in the first book. He just was not as fast as the rest of us in picking up the pieces. There was talk about him staying in the first class for two years.

At this time it was approaching Easter and custom was that each one of us in the class had to grow a daffodil at home. The bulbs were supplied by the school and on a certain day we had to bring them for judging. Mine had a flower on it, but was very reluctant to open. Others had no flowers, and some just died of thirst. Not Cedric’s however. He brought his daffodil to school showing proudly three flowers and they were big, being surrounded by a mass of green healthy fleshy leaves. Needless to say Cedric’s plant won the first class certificate. He could still not multiply five by five, but his daffodil was the biggest and the best.

Somehow he stayed in our class, battling his way through years of maths and learning how to express himself correctly in english, accompanied by low marks. Of course, someone had to be last in the class, but it always seemed to be Cedric. I would add that his results in the daffodil competition were maintained. We were somehow all convinced that one day he would become a gardener.

When school was finished, most of us continued to college. On my first day in college, who did I see: it was Cedric.

“Hi Cedric, glad to see you” I said suppressing my surprise at him actually being there.

“Hi” was the answer “I think we are in the same class” and we were.

Apparently he failed miserably at the written entrance examinations, but exceeded in the physical tests. He could run faster and jump higher than anyone in the class. After a test with the football team, the college decided that they had to have Cedric and so he was signed in. Again he was the bottom of the class in all the examinations, but saved many matches on the football field and brought many trophies to fill the glass cabinet shown proudly at the entrance to the college.

One day our college days came to an end. We all proudly received our certificates. Cedric unfortunately received none, but was given free entrance to the local football stadium as a compensation. He was very happy.

Our ways really did now split and it was at least twenty years until we had a college reunion. I had got married in the meanwhile and was the father of two children. Life had been good to me, I had a job, a wonderful wife, but it was not easy making ends meet sometimes with a growing family.

When I arrived at the hall with my wife where the reunion was being held, I parked my middle class car on the parking space and was climbing out just as a Rolls Royce with chauffeur parked next to me.

“Hello, said a familiar voice. How are you keeping? Let me introduce my wife Sabrina.”

OK, you are not going to believe this, or perhaps you do, but I was looking into Cedric’s face. Perhaps somewhat more round, a little less hair, but the same eyes resembling that of a faithful dog that was looking for a master.

“Oh fine thanks, Cedric.” It was then that I noticed Sabrina. A curvaceous blond, immaculate make-up and dressed in something that did not look like it fell off the back of a lorry, if you know what I mean. The lady was top quality, although I still preferred my average housewife model who also gave Sabrina her hand, being social. I just had the feeling that my wife had a sort of automatic dislike of her, but women are funny sometimes.

“Nice car” I said “and a chauffeur. Looks like you are doing well Cedric.”

“Oh, that; yes , well I did have a bit of luck on the national lottery."

“You mean you won something.”

“Sort of, I won the lot. Just shortly afterwards I met Sabrina. She was the answer to my dreams so we got married and we have been together since.”

“Well that’s fine Cedric, glad that everything went well.” Although I did have a funny feeling about Sabrina, but she was looking at Cedric with money signs reflecting in her eyes so I suppose they were happy together.

“I was just lucky, especially when my uncle Leo died in America.”

Now I was losing the thread somewhere.

“Your uncle Leo.”

“Yes, the family really forgot him as he wandered of many years ago. He never got married and struck lucky on his farm. Started digging and oil came out of the ground. There was no-one around to take over after his death.”

“Don’t tell me Cedric. You inherited it all.”

“Yes, I suppose I did.”

Otherwise my wife and I had a lovely evening seeing old school and college friends and talking about old times. Someone wanted to warm up the old story about Cedric having the best daffodils, but I said to forget it. It might be embarrassing for him.”

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