Abdullah the fisherman was as poor as can be. He was wont to cast his net in the shallow waters. Those who launched out in the mid-sea brought home bigger catch. Many of Abdullah’s friends advised him to dare and go for bigger things. Poor Abdu! he quaked at the idea of exposing himself to needless risks. ‘What if I die in the enterprise? who shall feed my family?’ So he stayed at the edge of the sea and cast his net in the morning and in the evening. He just eked out a life as a fisherman.
One morning he cast his net and felt a tug. It promised a big catch. When he pulled it in with great struggle he came across an old wooden chest and it contained nothing but some worthless bonds. ‘Why Enron should entangle my net? It is more than I can understand’. Next he caught a bottle in which was a message. The King of Nigeria had promised untold wealth if only he remitted 2.5 million dollars to his account in Lichtenstein.’He looked at the golden crown burnished on the letter and the name of the king in rainbow colors. Finally he observed,’If the king of SCAM is so hard pressed for a handout from me, he must be poorer than me.’ He was sure that if the royal majesty would only open his largesse- safely stored in some Swiss banks, with his help he must be a man of straw.’ So he threw it away.
Next time he cast his net he hauled in a sealed jar he remembered the bottle he had just thrown away. He was about to throw but he heard a whimper. He was greatly surprised. He looked closely and saw the mouth was stopped with wax and against the red wax was the seal of Solomon. ‘Ah I must show some respect to a king who was mighty and wise.’
He opened it and saw puffs of smoke coming from within. It became bellows of smoke and a Jinn stepped out.
He said,’ The first thousand years I daily prayed thus,’Whoever released me shall be master of the sea. I hold the riches of the deep.’ ‘
Poor Abdul quaked and waited for the Jinn to finish his tale. ‘Next five hundred years I took an inventory and found how much my wealth was lying idle. I said whoever released me shall possess half the riches.’
The Jinn paused and began,’Next five hundred years I spent planning whoever let me out will pay with his life.’
Abdullah shuddered and felt his head reeling. He wondered how to get out of the terrible fate that awaited him. The Jinn shrilled to see the fisherman was keeping silence. He shouted, ‘ Who shall make good of my loss but you?!’
Then he said,’If you cannot I will have to kill you.’
Abdullah replied,’Killing me will not earn you interest. I have a plan to earn all the wealth that you lost.’
Jinn at first would not believe. Abdullah sensed that the Jinn what with his millennia of solitary incarceration had lost his reason. He saw nothing but wealth. Abdullah therefore had to go easy. He softly said he was sure he knew where King Solomon had left his untold riches.
Instantly the Jinn shrieked. The fisherman asked,’The name of Solomon makes you cry like a banshee. It is understandable.’
‘You do understand my feelings, don’t you?’ the Jinn exclaimed somewhat mollified. Abdullah nodded and said the best way to get back at the dead King was to steal his buried treasure.
‘Where is it?’ asked the Jinn eagerly.
‘It is buried under the Dome of the Rock.’
‘Come we shall go there instantly.’
‘Oh no’ cried the fisherman,’both Jews and Moslems are fighting for it. They have guns, bombs and many other weapons of war.
‘So what will you advise me?’
‘Get in the jar and I shall smuggle you across to Jerusalem. Then we shall see.’
The Jinn brightened. He knew he would get even with the king who had cast spells on him and put him in the jar.
‘You mean well. Do you not?” the Jinn was somewhat apprehensive. The fisherman assured him,’By the word of Madoff, my word is my bond.’
‘I quite believe you.’ the Jinn said.
He went back into the jar with a whimper. Quickly the fisherman closed the mouth with the seal of Solomon and cast the jar into the sea.
He was happy that he lived to cast his net another day.