Once upon a time, a man decided to vacation on a cruise ship
in the Caribbean. It was wonderful-the experience of his
life! He was waited upon hand and foot. But, alas, it did
not last. A hurricane came up suddenly and the ship went
down. The man found himself, he knew not how, swept up on the
shore of an island. There was nothing else anywhere to be
seen. No person, no supplies, nothing.
The man looked around. There were some bananas and coconuts,
but that was it. He was desperate and forlorn, but decided to
make the best of it. So for the next four months he ate
bananas, drank coconut juice and mostly looked to the sea
mightily for a ship to come to his rescue.
One day, as he was lying on the beach stroking his beard and
looking for a ship, he spotted movement out of the corner of
his eye. Could it be true, was it a ship? No, from around
the corner of the island came a rowboat. In it was the most
gorgeous woman he had ever seen... or at least, within the
past four months. She was tall and tanned, and her blond
hair flowed in the sea breeze, giving her an almost ethereal
quality. She spotted him also (since he was waving and
yelling and screaming to get her attention), and she rowed her
boat towards him.
In disbelief, he asked, "Where did you come from? How did
you get here?"
She said, "I rowed from the other side of the island. I
landed on this island when my cruise ship sank."
"Amazing", he said, "I didn't know anyone else had survived.
How many of you are there? Where did you get the rowboat?
You must have been really lucky to have a rowboat wash-up with
"It is only me", she said, "and the rowboat didn't wash up,
nothing else did."
"Well then", said the man, "how did you get the rowboat?"
"I made the rowboat out of raw material that I found on the
island," replied the woman. "The oars were whittled from Gum
tree branches, and I wove the bottom from Palm branches, and
the sides and stern came from a Eucalyptus tree."
"But, but...," stuttered the man, "what about tools and
hardware, how did you do that?"
"Oh, no problem," replied the woman, "on the south side of
the island there is a very unusual strata of alluvial rock
exposed. I found that if I fired it to a certain temperature
in my kiln, it melted into forgeable ductile iron. I used
that for tools, then used the tools to make the hardware."
"But, enough of that," she said, "where do you live?" At
last the man was forced to confess that he had been sleeping
on the beach. "Well, let's row over to my place," she said.
So they got into the rowboat and left for her side of island.
The woman easily rowed them around to a wharf that led to the
approach to her place. She tied up the rowboat with a
beautifully woven hemp rope. They walked up a stone walk and
around a palm tree, and there stood an exquisite bungalow
painted in blue and white. "It's not much," she said, "but I
call it home. Sit down, please. Would you like a drink?"
"No thanks," said the man, "one more coconut juice and I
"It won't be coconut juice, the woman replied. "I have a
still; how about a Pina Colada?" Trying to hide his continued
amazement, the man accepted, and they sat down on her couch to
talk. After a while, when they had exchanged their stories,
the woman asked, "Tell me, have you always had a beard?"
"No", the man replied, "I was clean shaven all of my life,
even on the cruise ship".
"Well if you would like to shave, there's a razor upstairs in
the cabinet in the bathroom." The man, no longer questioning
anything, went upstairs to the bathroom. In the cabinet was a
razor made from a bone handle, with two shells honed to a
hollow-ground edge fastened to its end inside of a swivel
mechanism. The man shaved, showered and went back down
"You look great," said the woman, "I think I'll go up and
slip into something more comfortable." The man settled in to