A Frugal Family Tradition

An accountant’s thriving business in a small Scottish town had been in the family for generations. The main offices were in an old building and clients had to walk up a single marble step to reach the front door.

Over time, the marble step wore away until a deep dent developed in it from all the footsteps. One day, the accountant asked a stonemason to take a look and give him a quote for how much a new marble step would cost. The stonemason looked closely at the worn step, then scratched his head.

“It’ll be a big job,” said the stonemason. “But I suppose I could give you a new step for 100 pounds.”

The accountant frowned. “That’s a bit more than I wanted to pay.” They both looked at the step, and then the accountant turned to the stonemason:

“What if you dug up the step, turned it over, and put it back into the ground? Then it would be good as new.”

The stonemason agreed. “I’d do that for just 20 pounds.”

“Please do it,” said the accountant, and he went back inside the office.

An hour later the stonemason rang the bell. The accountant opened the door and saw the stonemason standing in a hole with the step. A nearly identical dent was evident on the other side. The stonemason chuckled. “From the looks of it, I’d say your great-great-great- grandfather thought of the same thing about 150 years ago.”

Happy Thanksgiving!!

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