The riddle of the little shepherd boy

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timmy
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The riddle of the little shepherd boy

Post by timmy » Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:01 am

Many years ago, I met an old rancher in the boondocks of New Mexico. Like other folks in the increasingly disappearing rural areas of the world, he was a "salt of the earth" type, of which we wish for more and see too few. He was quite predominantly a Spanish-speaker, but sometimes, one encounters others who speak a "universal language," so we made ourselves understood to each other.

Here is his riddle. It's only a little simple bit of fun, and a great memory of a wonderful day I had, a long time ago.
There was a little shepherd boy on the side of the hill, watching his sheep.

A man came over the hill, and said to the little shepherd boy, "Ho, O shepherd of twenty!"

"Excuse me, sir," the little shepherd boy replied. "If I had again as many sheep as I now have, and then also half again as many more, only then would I be a shepherd of twenty."
So, after this story, the old rancher asked, "How many sheep did the little shepherd boy have?"

(The somewhat odd way that he spoke was due to his New Mexican Spanish dialect.)
“The principle of self defense, even involving weapons and bloodshed, has never been condemned, even by Gandhi.” - Martin Luther King, Jr.

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them.” - Maya Angelou

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sfcabhishek
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Re: The riddle of the little shepherd boy

Post by sfcabhishek » Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:25 am

Quite a nice riddle.

I think the shepherd has 8 sheep.
As, it says "half again as many more"

X is number of sheep the shepherd has,
Then, x + x + x/2 = 20

Mr.Shome
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Re: The riddle of the little shepherd boy

Post by Mr.Shome » Fri Dec 11, 2020 10:09 am

Lovely presentation. Yes, looks like 8 sheep.

Regards.
Mil Sake Aasani Sey Uski Khwaish Kisko hai. Zid toh uski hai, jo muqaddar mein likha he nahin

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Re: The riddle of the little shepherd boy

Post by timmy » Fri Dec 11, 2020 1:39 pm

You gentlemen have it!

I also thought for a minute, and then said, "Eight."

The old rancher became very excited and pointed at me, exclaiming in broken English: "You! You know-a the algebra! You know-a the algebra!"

I admitted to a slight knowledge of algebra, and made some good friends that day.
“The principle of self defense, even involving weapons and bloodshed, has never been condemned, even by Gandhi.” - Martin Luther King, Jr.

“When someone shows you who they are, believe them.” - Maya Angelou

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