There is a story told of a well in the middle east. It was in the desert, and some travelers came across it. They hadn’t put any work into it nor did they know where it came from, they just knew that it met their needs and so they stayed. It was the only place for miles were people could get water. So they set up their tents and made it home. After a while children were born and those children had children. The oasis grew until it became a small village.
And the well kept providing. It seemed to those in the village that the well had always been there and they gave little thought to the source of the water. Soon desert nomads came to visit and brought with them exotic wears and expensive spices. As time passed Caravans laden with dainties and precious treasures, became more and more frequent.
But a problem arose and the clan leaders all got together and had consul in order to decide what to do. Someone had voiced concerns that with the size of the village and all the caravans that the well would dry up. “That is impossible!” One of the elders cried out. “It has been here since before we got here and it will continue.” But questions grew and it was concluded that no one really knew how long it would last.
So a decision was made to ration how much water was given to the visitors. Almost instantaneously the council reconvened to discuss another horrendous problem.
“The caravans have stopped and our trade carts lie empty and I fear we may never get them back.” One man said. “It is because we have selfishly horded our water.” An elderly founder said with a cracked age ridden voice.” “Nonsense, what do those with expensive jewels and leisure want with water, there is nothing special about our well, and besides they are used to the finest wines in all the land, they have no interest in our water. What we need is to offer them something that would attract them.” “We could build a bizarre under a great tent with all sorts of trading goods and music, and torches by night.” “Yes, Yes!” The council erupted.
What a day it was. There were animals from all four corners of the globe, and feasting and wine, the village had never made so much money before and the coffers were full to overflowing. But just as suddenly the village grew quiet as once again the caravans failed to come. And dust collected under the mighty shelter of the once bustling bizarre.
Then a fierce drought came to the land and the villagers were drawing water from the well to water their crops, and once the council found out, they quickly posted guards at the well to monitor the water. Stating, “We cannot have ordinary citizens using our well, for their best interests.”
With time the guards soon become the only ones to draw water from the well, and people started to leave the village until the only thing left in the village was the abandoned huts, and a well that had never run dry.