The ‘Pick Me’ Pot – An African Story
In a village in Ghana lived young Khamisi, with her stepmother and stepsister who were very mean to her. Khamisi would walk through thejungle to the river every day to fetch water. One day as she was returning home, water pots balanced on her head, she tripped up over a hidden crocodile and fell, breaking the pots. As she tried to sit up the gigantic crocodile hissed, “Sit on my back little girl, I will take you to a magic island with magic pots.” The crocodile took Khamisi to a hidden island and told her, “On the island you will find many large pots who will yell out ‘pick me, pick me’. Ignore them and look instead for a small pot that will say ‘don’t pick me, don’t pick me’. Take the small pot and when you get home, request the pot to show you its magic powers and it will give you everything you need. But when you have enough, you must ask the pot to stop. DO NOT waste the magic”.
When Khamisi got home, she found to her delight, that the pot could cook and clean but most importantly, it could give her water so she no longer had to walk for miles through the jungle to fetch any. Khamisi decided to share the pot with her stepmother and stepsister, but they were very greedy and asked the pot for a room full of money. Then, when they had the money they broke Khamisi’s pot. They would get one of their own – then the magic would belong only to them. As the stepsister rowed across to the magic island on the crocodile’s back she was given the same advice. “On the island you will find many large pots who will yell out ‘pick me, pick me’. Ignore them and look instead for a small pot that will say ‘don’t pick me, don’t pick me’. But she was greedy and thought, “If a small pot can give me so much money, imagine how much more a large pot will give me.”
However the large pot was full of angry magic and when mother and daughter requested to see its magic powers, it threw out so much fire that they were both burnt to death. Khamisi realised that magic could be dangerous, so she broke the angry pot and using the room full of money that the small pot had given earlier, she built a well in the village so that no one would ever have to walk miles to the river to fetch water again.
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