Turns out you can put a price on happiness — $1.3 million to be exact.
That's how much a handwritten note by Albert Einstein fetched at an auction house in Jerusalem this week. Einstein gave the scribbled message to a bellboy in lieu of a tip during a tour of Japan in 1922. Proving himself a master of the uplifting aphorism, Einstein wrote: "A calm and modest life brings more happiness than the pursuit of success combined with constant restlessness."
A second note Einstein wrote for the bellboy went for $200,000; this one reads "When there's a will, there's a way."
The notes are in German and were written shortly after Einstein learned he had won the Novel Prize. As word of his win spread in Japan, the physicist experienced an unprecedented level of celebrity and these quick thoughts serve as a generous autograph to a fan. Einstein told the bellboy that this "tip" would eventually be worth something, according to .
While in Tokyo, Einstein spoke to almost 2,500 people, and it is said that than the Japanese Emperor or Empress.
Einstein is one of the founders of the Hebrew University in Jerusalem, where many of his works are today. He was offered the first presidency of Israel but declined.