A week later, the horse returned with a herd of wild horses from the hills and this time the neighbours congratulated the farmer on his good fortune. His reply was, 'Good fortune? Misfortune? Who knows?'
Then, when the farmer's son was attempting to tame one of the wild horses, he fell off its back and broke his leg. Everyone thought this very bad misfortune. Not the farmer, whose only reaction was, 'Misfortune? Good fortune? Who knows?'
Some weeks later, the army marched into the village and conscripted every able-bodied youth they found there. When they saw the farmer's son with his broken leg, they let him off. Now was that good fortune? Misfortune? Who knows?