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A few years ago, two Englishmen managed to get lost in the Sahara Desert. After three days, they were about to give up when they spotted a brightly coloured area on the horizon. Thinking it might be an oasis, they diverted slightly to get to it.

It wasn't an oasis, but a form of travelling market. The two Englishmen hoped that one of the stallholders would have some water, so they approached the first stand and asked for water. The vendor bowed to them and replied "I have no water, but by the grace of Allah I do have sponge cake, tins of sliced peaches, strawberry jelly, custard, and cream."

Rather crestfallen at this, they asked the second stallholder they saw. "I am sorry, but I have no water. By the grace of Allah I do however have sponge cake, fresh sliced peaches, orange jelly, custard, and cream."

Feeling really worried by now, they found a third vendor and asked if he had some water. "Like the previous persons you have asked I have no water, but like them, I have, by the grace of Allah, sponge cake, sliced peaches and pears, lime jelly, egg free custard, and cream if you would like to try them."

Feeling very depressed they tried the fourth salesman, who responded "It is most unfortunate that I have no water, but by the grace of Allah I have sponge cake, sliced peaches, mandarin slices, lemon jelly, custard, and cream for sale."

This went on for every stallholder they saw, a request for water would be met with small variations on "I have no water, but by the grace of Allah I have sponge cake, sliced fruit, some flavour of jelly, custard, and cream."

As they walked out of the far side of the market, the first Englishman turned to the second and said, "That was rather strange."

To which the second responded, "Yes, it was a trifle bazaar."




OK I will get my coat

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