“In the far northern lands, a long time ago lived a king who fell gravely ill. He called together the best doctors in the entire empire, and they used all the remedies they knew and some new ones they made up along the way. But far from improving, the king’s health appeared to grow steadily worse. So desperate was the king that he promised half of all his possessions to anyone capable of curing him.
The announcement spread quickly, and doctors, magicians and healers from around the world arrived in an attempt to return the king to health. Yet it was a troubadour who announced:
- I know the remedy: Just look for a happy man. Wearing his shirt is the cure to your illness.
The king’s emissaries went to all the corners of the earth, but finding a happy man was no easy task. The one who was healthy wanted money, he who had that wanted love, and he who had that complained about his children.
Then one afternoon, the king’s soldiers passed by a small hut where a man was resting by the fire:
- What a wonderful life! With the work finished, fine health and good friends and family, what else could a man ask for?
When the palace discovered that a happy man had finally been found, there was great joy. The King’s eldest son ordered:
- ¡Bring the shirt from that man! Offer him anything he wants in exchange!
Great was the impatience of the people as they waited for the emissaries to return with the shirt that would cure their ruler but, when they arrived, they arrived empty-handed:
- Where is the shirt of the happy man? My father needs to put it on!
- Sire – answered the messengers sadly – the happy man has no shirt.
Leon Tolstoy’s tale would have a different ending today. The author of this guide is a Renaissance man, musician, businessman, composer, cinematographer, internationally acclaimed for his compositions and documentaries, Academic of the International Academy of Sciences and Arts in Paris and Vice-president of the “100 Cities for Peace” International Project, who combines the wisdom of his origins from beyond the steppes of Russia with that acquired in Malaga over the last twenty years.
The shirt is one size fits all and does not discriminate based on sex. May you dress well and enjoy it thoroughly.
José M. Orive