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The Donkey, the Jackal and the Cucumbers

Udhata was a donkey which lived in a village.  He was a hardworking donkey.  He lived with his master who was a washer man.  Every morning, the donkey and his master would go house to house in the village and collect clothes to be washed.    The washerman would collect the clothes and put them on two large bags he had slung on the side of the donkey.  After collecting all the clothes, Udhata and his master would go to the river.  His master, the washerman would wash all the clothes in the river.  He would then hang them out to dry in the noon day sun. 

The washer man would then eat his lunch which he carried with him and have a nap near the river.  In the evening he would collect the washed clothes and return to the village where he would return the clothes to the owners. 

This daily routine of Udhata continued for many years.   However, he was not happy with his food.  His master did not feed him properly.  Every night he would slip away from his master’s home and roam around the village.  He would stealthily find his way to somebody’s garden or farm and eat to his heart’s content. 

One day in his wanderings in the night, he found a jackal stealthily roaming in the village.  The Donkey was first curious.  He then drew closer to the Jackal and asked him who he was.  The Jackal told him that he lived in a forest a few miles away from the village.  He came to the village in search of food.   The Donkey too was in search of food.  So the jackal and the Donkey went around the village together in the night. 

In the village, lived a farmer who had a farm of cucumbers.    The farmer grew the cucumbers which he would harvest and sell in the local market.   The cucumbers had grown big and juicy in the farmer’s field.  The Farmer knew that thieves would be out to steal his cucumbers.  So, he slept near the farm in a little shed.

The Donkey and the Jackal stealthily crept near the field.   It was a full moon night.   They could see the cucumbers in the moonlight.  The cucumbers looked so juicy and tempting.  They would surely be tasty to eat.  But how do they get inside the field.  The field was surrounded with a fence

The jackal asked the Donkey to stay below a tree.  It then went round the farm to find a suitable place through which it could enter.  The farmer was fast asleep in his shed.   It soon found a spot where the fence was a bit wide.  They could squeeze through the gap.  He went back to his new friend, the donkey and told him about the plan.  The donkey was delighted.

The jackal and the donkey slowly crept near the fence.  They were careful not to make any noise which could awaken the farmer.    They managed to sneak into the farm.  The cucumbers were really tasty to eat.  They were large and watery.  The Donkey ate them to his heart’s content.  The fox was happily gorging them as well. 

The night was now nearing its end.   In a couple of hours, the sun would rise.  They needed to leave the field at once.  The farmer would awake before sunrise.  The fox wanted to leave the field, he had eaten his fill.  He could come again tomorrow.  The Donkey, however, was in no mood to leave.  He was used to eating leftovers and scraps of food.  He thought he may never find such good food again.  He would not listen to the fox.    They could leave a few minutes before sunrise he said. 

The fox had had enough.  He bade the donkey bye and left the farm.  The donkey was not bothered.  He had found a feast that night.  Nothing would stop him from enjoying it.  He ate and ate till he could eat no more.  He then felt drowsy and went to sleep.

The sun had risen over the village.  The cocks in the villages crowed as usual and woke up the villagers.  The farmer had woken up as well.  He went around the farm to see if everything was well.  As he went round, he was surprised to see that the fence was bent in a particular place.  He looked closer.  There, inside the farm he could see an animal.  It was the donkey and he was fast asleep. 

The farmer was angry.  He quickly closed the gap in the fence.  He would teach the donkey a lesson.  He called a few of his neighbours.    The donkey was not trapped.  The farmer and his neighbours entered the field with sticks.  They set upon the donkey and beat him black and blue.  The donkey staggered out of the farm.  He only wished he had listened to the jackal’s word and had gotten out of the farm before the dawn. 

Children, this story tell us the harm that greed will cause us.  Greed is a vice that will bring us misery and suffering.  It is always good to be satisfied with what we get and not wish for everything.  We should be thankful for what we have received. 

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