Late one evening, as I was walking along a dirt road, I came across a young man sitting under a tree by the wayside. He sat facing the last flickers of sunlight and in the gathering darkness I could just make out a peaceful smile on his face. Fireflies lit and then expired randomly in the tree above him, and I could hear the far off sounds of workers laughing as they were coming in from the fields somewhere, a gate unlatched and creaking on its hinges, the wide world opening up on the edge of night.
The young man just sat there taking it all in. He told me that he had been a prince, but he had left behind his crown and his castle and his jewels. He had abandoned it all in exchange for what he called “all the treasures of the world” with a sweep of his arm towards the horizon. He seemed perfectly content to go on sitting there, so I continued on my way as the sky faded to reveal a wealth of stars. But every now and then I stopped to think of the smile I had seen on the prince’s face.