Tongue Tied Twisted | Kanchan Jain – The Clever Crow + The Dancing Monkey of Rajasthan
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Kanchan Jain – The Clever Crow.

[When we were at school, drama took place once a month. This is a story from one of those plays.]

Two cats are playing and they find a roti (Indian bread).They both start fighting for it. Up above, there was a crow watching what was going on. Crows are known to be clever.

The crow flew down to the cats and asked them, “What is the matter?” One of the cats answered, “This is my roti.”

And the other is saying “It is mine, as I found it.”

The crow said, “I will settle this matter” and tears it into halves. “There, now both of you can share.” Both the cats started fighting again and one of the cats said “One piece is larger than the other.” The crow then said, “I will eat some of the larger piece and then it will be equal.” The crow took a big bite from the larger piece and it was now smaller than the other. The cat with the smaller piece complained and said “The other piece is now bigger.” The crow then took another bite from the larger piece and now said “They are now both equal.”

The other cat said “No, the other piece is larger now.”

The crow then said “OK, I will take a bite from the larger piece now.” The cats were not satisfied because one piece was still bigger. This continued until there were only two small pieces left.

The cats said to each other “The crow has made a fools of us both, let’s eat what is left.”

Kanchan Jain – The Clever Dancer.

There was a girl and she had a monkey as a pet, the monkey was called Lakhoor Bhandri. [In Rajasthan they say Lakhoor.]

The girl really loved her monkey and taught her many nice dances. One day the king saw the monkey dancing and was amazed to see how well she danced. He then decided that he wanted her to dance in his Sabha (musical programme). The king had taken her into his court and gave her a nice place to live and plenty of good food and drink. The monkey was happy. However, one day she was looking very sad. The king asked, why she was sad. The monkey replied, “I eat very well, yet my owner, (who she calls sister) barely eats a dry roti (Indian bread), I have difficultly eating here when I know my sister is sitting outside starving.”

The king said, “Do not worry, let us give her one year’s worth of food and water: lentils, rice, butter, milk, whatever she wants.” The king’s order was carried out and the girl received one year’s supply of food. The next day the monkey was very happy and started dancing again.

After a couple of days, the monkey was sad and crying in a corner. The king asked “What’s wrong? Your sister has got plenty of food now.”

The monkey says, “I wear beautiful clothes but my sister is wearing tatty clothes. I don’t like my clothes now.”

The king said “Not a problem, I will send some material to her and get some clothes made.” The monkey again was happy and started dancing.

A few days later she started crying again and the king asked “What’s wrong? Your sister has food and clothes now!”

The monkey said, “I live in a palace and she lives a derelict hut.”

The king said “Do not worry we will build her a palace.” She again started dancing well.

Once again the monkey was sad and didn’t eat all day. Again the king asked what was wrong. The monkey replied “My sister has everything and she is now of a marriageable age. Get her married to the minister’s son.” The king said “No problem. We will get her married to the minister’s son.” She got married and lived at the minister’s palace. For a few days the monkey was dancing well and then started making excuses daily.

At first she was complaining about her head hurting and then her leg, then a thorn in her foot. The king then asked “What’s wrong?” She then started dancing but half-heartedly. A few days later the king was frustrated and unhappy. He said “The monkey is no good get her out of here.” She left and returned to her owner. She was very happy to be there. They were both happy. Her owner who was poor with very little was now wealthy and had all she needed. She had no more need for the king.

Group Four