CREDOS:Obstinate couple — V

Allan B Chinen

What are you taking about?" the wife said. "I did no such thing." She stor-med into the house. A minute later she stormed out. "Where are all our belongings?"

The wife cried out, "Foolish man! You lost your face and your fortune, all for the sake of a wager. I will take care of the calf from now on because I am leaving you and taking the calf with me. I do not want a husband as dumb and stubborn as you." With that she walked off with the calf.

She went to the village square and asked the children there if they had seen a man carrying a large bag. The children pointed to the desert. She saw a man hurrying away, a big sack on his back.

The wife pulled her veil tight and went after the man, pulling her calf behind her. While she walked, she came up with a plan.

When she caught up with the thief at an oasis, she sat a little ways away from him, sighed, and batted her eyelashes. The thief, who was not married, was flattered that an attractive woman would pay attention to him.

He said, "Dear lady, what are you doing in the middle of the desert with only a calf? Have you no father or husband to take care of you?" She said, "If I did, would I be in the middle of the desert with only my calf?"

The two of them started walking together and talking. The thief thought, "She seems like a strong, resourceful person. I should marry her." So he proposed to her. The wife said, "If we get married, how will you support us?"

The thief explained, "In this bag I have enough loot to last us a long while."

The wife said, "Let me see."

The thief replied, "No, you have to wait until we are married." —