There once lived a two friends in a poor suburb of a large city. The one was happy to continue his father’s business as a carpenter, but the other always wanted more; he swore he’d rise rise above mediocrity.
He bought a flashy car with money he borrowed, and set out to establish himself as an important businessman in the city.
His business thrived, allowing him to approach the bank for another loan to buy a villa near the sea.
He’d often invite his carpenter-friend over, bragging continuously about the modern conveniences in his mansion. The carpenter was impressed with his friend’s wealth and often expressed his admiration for the success his old friend achieved.
“How can you afford such luxury?” The carpenter marvelled at the splendour of it all. His friend laughed and said anybody could live like a king: “Dream big, my friend. Impress people. You’ll see how easy it is if you talked to some moneylenders.”
But the carpenter didn’t do that. He loved working in his father’s old shop where he fashioned chairs and tables for the rich people’s houses.
One day, a strange thing happened: the bank demanded repayment of their loans. They used words like ‘inflation’, ‘credit squeeze’, ‘world-wide recession’ and ‘regrettable circumstances’.
The wheels of industry ground to a halt and the businessman went bankrupt. The bank sold everything he had, forcing him to live on the streets.
On a cold and rainy night, he breathed his last and was buried in a pauper’s grave.
The carpenter lived to a ripe old age, often remarking on the luxurious life of the rich and the famous. “But,” he’d then quickly add, “it just isn’t worth the sacrifice.”