Looking for tranquility and bewitched by the sight of some rare birds I strayed deep into the dense forest and soon lost my way. Try as I might, I could find no way to get out of the labirynth.. After an hour of tiring and fruitless walk in the dark wood, I got jittery as the evening was fast approaching.
To my great luck I stumbled upon a sage who was sitting under a large tree. He was in a trance with his eyes closed sitting in padmasan. I remembered the mythological story of Parikshit Maharaja who in similar circumstances got impatient with a sage when he did not respond to his questions. In anger he put a dead serpent on his neck only to be cursed by sage’s sons that he would die within a week bitten by a snake.. Though scared by the threatening surroundings, I waited patiently for the sage to open his eyes which he did luckily soon thereafter
When he smiled at me gently with a benign look, I was assured that he was no Durvasa type ever quick to curse. A thought occurred to me then. Why miss the golden opportunity that has come by me by divine grace? I forgot to ask him the way to get out of the forest. Instead I prostrated full length before him and sought his blessings to lift me from the pall of poverty that I was in. To impress him I told him that if only I were rich, I would feed the poor daily. He was highly pleased with my concern for the poor and readily granted a boon that I would find a thousand rupee note every time I opened my purse. I did an instant check in his presence and found one. I asked him in all eagerness whether I can open the purse any number of times in a day. He nodded his head with a smile and showed me the way to exit the forest.
My joy at the turn of events knew no bounds but I was careful not to share this stroke of luck with my neighbours lest they also went in search of the sage. But they were all wondering at my sudden affluence and the stream of poor at my door daily for food.. I was a very happy man till one day the Reserve Bank of India in its wisdom decided to withdraw the existing thousand rupee notes and introduced a new water mark in all new notes issued.
Sadly the notes that I got from the purse continued to be the older version and no more valid. Ever since I keep searching for the sage daily in the forest and have not found him till date. The old thousand rupee note keeps propping up in my purse to my great chagrin whenever I open it.