A troop of French Foreign Legionaries were marching through the desert. They had been marching for days, their water supply had run out, and they were on the brink of collapse.
And then suddenly, as they staggered over the crest of a large sand dune, they came upon a sight that brought relief to them all – a market place, spread out over the desert. Rows of colourful stalls, with their banners flapping in the breeze.
The legionaries were delighted. Filled with an extra surge of energy, they ran down the dune to the market.
Arriving at the first stall, the begged the stall-holder for water.
“I’m sorry,” says the stall-holder, “all I have are these delicious puddings made from jelly and sponge and with a cream topping sprinkled with hundreds and thousands.”
Not to be deterred, the troops move on to the next stall, pleading for water.
“Sorry, but I only have these bowls of pudding, made from jelly and sponge,” says the man behind the counter.
The legionaries move on, but as they look down the rows of stalls, they can see that every single stall is selling exactly the same thing, and as they move along, asking for water, they get the same response every time.
Finally, one of the stall-holders takes pity on them, and tells them about an oasis not far away, so they leave the market, and head for the oasis.
As they’re leaving, one of the legionaries turns to his partner, and says “Hmmm. That was a trifle bazaar.”