It was in the latter stages of his stint as a prophet that she entered his life.
One morning, as she was walking to her job as a waitress at the local camel stop, she happened to notice him in his back yard, dressed in his sandwich board and hammering nails into boards. Curious, she stopped to kibbitz.
He ignored her and continued his pounding.
“What are you doing?” Elsie ﬁnally asked.
“Building a boat,” said Noah grufﬂy.
“Yeah?” She smiled at him. “Taking up boatbuilding, huh?”
“What’s wrong with being a boatbuilder?” he asked defensively.
“Oh, nothing,” she said. “It’s just that this is the middle of the desert.”
He put aside his hammer. “There’s a lot of job satisfaction in building boats,” he explained. “A recent survey showed that 90 percent of the boatbuilders rated their job satisfaction—”
“Wouldn’t that be a hundred percent? You’re the only boatbuilder around.”
He stopped to recalculate. “Right,” he ﬁnally agreed. “One hundred percent rated their job satisfaction as either ‘good’ or ‘excellent.’ But only 66.8 percent of the camel drivers rated their—”
“So they get a little sand in their eyes.” It was her turn to be defensive. Some of her best friends were camel drivers.