Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Ugliest Woman in the World

A curious old man, who was born blind, spent the whole day, everyday, sitting in front of his humble house listening to footsteps hurrying past, and trying to tell from the smells what kind of person was passing by. He grew tired of seeing the same old nothing all the time, and devised an unusual quest which would take him on an intriguing journey around the world. He was going to find the ugliest woman in the world!

He calculated that, from all the accounts of the world being deliciously filled to the brim with delicate-mannered and fine-featured women, he’d have to walk for three long days at a time, before he would stop and ask for directions to the house which the ugliest woman haunted with her hideous presence every grotesque day.

Day Three

Blind Man stopped at the first house he came to at the break of dawn. He rapped on the door and kept doing so until somebody came to open it. He said:

Pray show a blind man that you’re kind;
Where may one the ugliest woman find?

The blind man could not see to tell whether the person opposite him was smirking or standing still, shocked. But after a while the answer came, sweet and comforting to his keen ears: Just go down the street to the last door on your right.

The blind man went down the street to the last door on his right and rapped without stopping on the wooden door. Somebody came to open the door and, from her fragrance, she was a woman.

Have pity on a poor blind man who’s seen no thrill that life commands;
May I touch you with my hands?

The question hung frozen for a while and then the answer came along. She said, “Sure, go ahead.”

He put his fingertips lightly to her face, and found it coarse and bumpy. Surely this was the ugliest woman in the world. But he found her tall and full-bosomed body strongly appealing to his fingers. He changed his mind and thanked her very much with “You’re the most beautiful woman in the world.” Then he went off on his way.

Day Six

The blind man came to low, little gate and found it opened on the shove. He banged on the short little door repeatedly till somebody opened it. It was the voice of a woman, except she sounded like a man. And from where the speech came out, she was a ? dwarf. Surely the ugliest woman in the world.

Have pity on a poor blind man who’s seen no thrill that life commands;
May I touch you with my hands?

The answer rolled out without hesitation, “Sure, go ahead”.

His fingers found knobbly joints and crooked limbs. Pure ugly! But as he turned to go on his way she said, “You must be tired and hungry from walking. Why don’t you come in to dinner with me?” He left the dinner table that night feeling he’d just been with the prettiest woman in the world.

Day Nine

The blind man came to a huge mansion and made to knock on the giant gate, but a guard on duty blocked his path and asked him to hobble along. Hugely disappointed by his failure, for such a splendid house had endless space to hold the prettiest and the ugliest at the same time, the old man fixed his sight on the long road ahead and started the lonely walk.

“No, let him in.”
“But, Miss, he’s just a dirty, blind beggar.”
“Let him in.”

He found her young and totally charming. Sweet smelling, gentle voice, cultured speech; the prettiest woman in the world. But after playing the honourable hostess she asked him to do something little for her.

“I saw you walking down the street and knew my chance had finally come”
“What is your wish, ma’am?”
“There is an old man sleeping by a swimming pool near the gate you came through”
“Pardon me, ma’am, but I did not SEE the man or the pool.”
“Well, he’s my husband. I want you to stab him in the chest with your white rod on your way out. I’ll pay you anything to help me get rid of him. Since you’re blind, it would look an accident”.

Later, on his way, the blind man thought to himself, such a physically pleasing woman, sweetly concealing a hideous heart. He was not sure whether she was beautiful or beastly ugly. He was sure a person could not be both.

The blind man’s quest was taking him far from home, and he was nowhere near discovery. He had not found an ugly woman yet (or had he?). How then could he hope to find the ugliest woman in the world.

[Writer’s Note: this story is in the draft stage and must end here. But when would he find out that he’s on a useless journey?]

11 comments:

  1. He may never actually find out that he's on a fruitless journey till he realizes that ugliness can take different forms!

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  2. And even more, my friend, ugliness in mankind is usually rare except in the realm of criminal minds and uncouth character. I really have never seen an ugly person. I've heard of some, but never seen any.

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  3. I sure have seen ugly persons, very many, on the streets of Accra. Not in looks but in every other respect that makes a being human.

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  4. Kiz, I have 2 serial questions. I'll ask the first and wait for your anwer to ask the second. Question: are animals ugly?

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  5. I don't know why the blind man is jouneying on, I actually thought after the mansion experience he'd end his quest. We're all made up of so many sides, some ugly some beautiful. Sometimes it takes certain dire circumstances to bring out the ugliness in us and desperation brouhgt out the ugliness in the mansion lady.Other times it takes very insignificant or inconsequential things to let out the ugliness. Hmm, keep writing, would like to see how the journey ends.

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  6. it's all in the eyes of the beholder...

    and it's a dynamic mix beautitifully...

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  7. Deep, Monica, Deep. Nice debut comment. I wonder if I'll ever finish that story, or if it's meant to be finished.

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  8. Thanks for never failing to encourage, Novisi. :-)

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  9. Anonymous14 June, 2008

    personally i think attitude is what differenciates a beautiful person from an ugly one.unfortunatley it takes more than sight to see this and often times we don't give people a chance.the blind man's quest was fruitful.he found one of the ugliest people in the world -the young lady in the mansion.the dwarf may he hedious on the outside but her attitude will always draw people to her.isn't that the end of the matter? we all want people around us and our attitudes(BEAUTY)will either draw people to or away from us. Kordai

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  10. Kordai

    That dwarf was some woman, wasn't she?

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  11. "Are animals ugly?" - Nana, it depends on how one views the concept of ugliness. If one conceives it as looks-based then some animals like...are damn ugly and other animals like...are awesome! However, if the conception is attitude and demeanour based, then the answer would be informed by what the particular animal was engaged in at the time in question.

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