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Ağaca çıksa...
Crafty, not easily fooled
In Turkey - Türkiye'de

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Ağaca çıksa pabucu yerde kalmaz (lit. 'If he goes up in a tree, his shoes don't remain on the ground') -- the idiomatic meaning is 'He's crafty, not easily fooled.'

The story... One day, Nasreddin Hoca went out walking in his pair of brand new shoes. A gang of youthful pranksters saw him and set out to trick him and steal the new shoes. As they approached him on the footpath, they pretended to enter into a deep discussion among themselves -- about the Hoca's ability in the 'art' of tree climbing...But the Hoca was suspicious of their behavior and sensed that they meant to trick him. So when the leader of the gang asked the Hoca slyly whether or not the old fellow was still capable of climbing a nearby tree, the Hoca replied, "Of course, I am." And, with that, he jumped up on it and began climbing -- but not before tucking his new shoes safely in his breast coat. The gang members all shouted out at once, "Wait Hoca, leave the shoes down here on the ground. What use will they be in the tree?" By now the Hoca understood the gang's intention very well, and with a glint in his eye, replied, "Oh, who knows...Perhaps from the tree, I'll have to journey to the next village by yonder road."

And so, the idiom has become associated with people who are intelligent and alert in the face of tricky dealings.

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