The Losing Lottery Ticket

Last summer, I bought a lottery ticket when the jackpot grew to an obscene amount of money.   I glanced at my newly purchased ticket and dreamed of bags and bags of money.   “What will you do first?”  my brain pondered.   My reply was pure and immediate.   I’ll toss the millions in the bank.. then I’ll strap a pack on my back and start hiking the AT.

After the drawing, I sat there holding my worthless ticket.   Yes, I lost the lottery, but I gained the dream.   Hiking the AT was my  far-fetched “crazy” dream..  But the more I thought about it, the more it just… fit.


The story below is one of my favorites.   I hope it makes you smile and realize what really matters in life.

The Story of the Mexican Fisherman

The businessman was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The businessman complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them. The Mexican replied only a little while.

The businessman then asked why he didn’t stay out longer and catch more fish?  The Mexican said he had enough to support his family’s immediate needs. The businessman then asked, but what do you do with the rest of your time? The Mexican fisherman said, “I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take a siesta with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine and play guitar with my amigos; I have a full and busy life, señor.”

The businessman scoffed, “I am a Harvard MBA and I could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat you could buy several boats; eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman, you would sell directly to the processor and eventually open your own cannery. You would control the product, processing and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City where you would run your expanding enterprise.”

The Mexican fisherman asked, “But señor, how long will this all take?” To which the businessman replied, “15-20 years, if you work hard at it.” “But what then, señor?” The businessman laughed and said, “That’s the best part! When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich. You would make millions.” “Millions, señor? Then what?” The businessman said, “Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take a siesta with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos.”

Categories: Pre-Hike | Tags: , , | 4 Comments

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4 thoughts on “The Losing Lottery Ticket

  1. Loon

    Yep…beware which dream you pursue.

  2. Peter

    Love It

  3. Bob aka "Raincloud"


  4. Joanna Reichert Photography

    Reblogged this on j. lynn reichert photographic art & design and commented:
    I LOVE this little story – and I think I found a new hiking friend! Check out Acorn Hikes the AT if you’ve ever felt the pull to step away from your everyday and traverse the mountain landscape.

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