Paresh, an Indian carpenter I once hired to help me restore my old farmhouse, had just finished a difficult and hard first day on the job. A flat tyre on his lorry made him lose an hour of work, his electric saw packed in, and now his ancient pickup truck refused to start. While I drove him home, Paresh sat in stony, thoughtful silence. On arriving at his home, Paresh, in a typical way the Indian folk would respond, invited me in to meet his family.
As we walked toward the front door, he paused briefly at a small tree, touching the tips of the branches with both hands. When opening the door to his home, he underwent an amazing transformation. His tanned face broke into big smile and he hugged his two young children and gave his wife a kiss. After a cup of tea, he walked me to my car. We passed the tree and my curiosity got the better of me. I asked him about what I had seen him do earlier. ‘Oh, that’s my trouble tree,’ Paresh replied. ‘I know I can’t help having troubles on the job, but one thing for sure, troubles don’t belong in the house with my wife and the children. So I just hang them on the tree every night when I come home. Then in the morning I pick them up again. Funny thing is’, he smiled winningly, ‘when I come out in the morning to pick them up, there aren’t nearly as many as I remember hanging up the night before.’
Thanks Ajesh and Suheil for sharing this story.