While at the Changs' place, Good Man Wang also learned to be frugal. How was he frugal? At the start of every new year, his mother would make two pairs of shoes for him to wear at work. Good Man Wang, however, usually couldn't bring himself to wear them, and went barefoot instead, wearing them only on special occasions. Because he cherished his blessings, each year he would save one pair of shoes and sell it for two dollars. Added to his yearly wage of seventy dollars, he would send home seventy-two dollars each year. As for himself, he did not keep a single penny. Good Man Wang often said, "If a man works conscientiously for three years, and avoids reckless spending, he will surely have savings."
11. Resolving to Be "Someone Different"
When Good Man Wang was twenty-two years old, he was working as a laborer for the Changs at Ten Li Platform. One day, some of the boss's relatives got into quarrel over the matter of separating the family and dividing up the family property. It got to the point that the brothers were fighting each other with knives and guns; they insulted and slandered each other, hated and wanted to kill each other, and almost did kill each other. Good Man Wang, out of kindness and a sense of duty, tried his best to interfere and stop the matter from turning worse. The Changs thus avoided a disaster.
Afterward, Good Man Wang often fell into deep reflection, pondering, "Whom were they fighting for?" After some time, he finally understood, "Aah! They were fighting for their wives and children!" At that time Good Man Wang was carrying out the manure from the yard and had just arrived at the pile of manure. He poured the manure out of the cart, stood up, looked up into the sky and made this resolve. He said aloud, "I have to be someone different!" That is to say, he would never fight over property for his wife or children at the expense of the relationship with his brothers. Another laborer who was working with him looked at him and asked, "What did you say?" Good Man Wang just smiled and did not reply.
To be continued