NARRATOR 4: Every morning, Wali Dad cut and bundled tall, wild grass. Every afternoon, he sold it as fodder in the marketplace.
NARRATOR 2: Each day, he earned thirty paisa. Ten of the small coins went for food. Ten went for clothes and other needs. And ten he saved in a clay pot under his bed.
NARRATOR 3: Inthis manner Wali Dad lived happily for many years.
NARRATOR 1: One evening, Wali Dad dragged out the pot to see how much money it held. He was amazed to find that his coins had filled it to the brim.
WALI DAD: (to himself) What am I to do with all this money? I need nothing more than I have.
NARRATOR 4: Wali Dad thought and thought. At last he had an idea.
NARRATOR 2: The next day, WaliDad loaded the money into a sack and carried it to a jeweler in the marketplace. He exchanged all his coins for a lovely gold bracelet.
NARRATOR 3: Then Wali Dad visited the home of a traveling merchant.
WALI DAD: Tell me, in all the world, who is the noblest lady?
MERCHANT: Without doubt, it is the young queen of Khaistan. I often visit her palace, just three days’ journey to the east.
WALIDAD: Do me a kindness. The next time you pass that way, give her this little bracelet, with my compliments.
NARRATOR 1: The merchant was astonished, but he agreed to do what the ragged grass-cutter asked.
NARRATOR 4: Soon after, the merchant found himself at the palace of the queen of Khaistan. He presented the bracelet to her as a gift from Wali Dad.
QUEEN: (admiring the bracelet) Howlovely! Your friend must accept a gift in return. My servants will load a camel with the finest silks.
NARRATOR 2: When the merchant arrived back home, he brought the silks to the hut of Wali Dad.
WALI DAD: Oh, no! This is worse than before! What am I to do with such finery?
MERCHANT: Perhaps you could give it to someone else.
NARRATOR 3: Wali Dad thought for a moment.
WALI DAD: Tell me, inall the world, who is the noblest man?
MERCHANT: That is simple. It is the young king of Nekabad. His palace, too, I often visit, just three days’ journey to the west.
WALI DAD: Then do me another kindness. On your next trip there, give him these silks, with my compliments.
NARRATOR 1: The merchant was amused, but he agreed.
NARRATOR 4: On his next journey, he presented the silks to theking of Nekabad.
KING: A splendid gift! In return, your friend must have twelve of my finest horses.
NARRATOR 2: So the merchant brought the king’s horses to Wali Dad.
WALI DAD: This grows worse and worse! What could I do with twelve horses? (thinks for a moment) I know who should have such a gift. I beg you, keep two horses for yourself, and take the rest to the queen of Khaistan!
NARRATOR3: The merchant thought this was very funny, but he consented. On his next visit to the queen’s palace, he gave her the horses.
NARRATOR 1: Now the queen was perplexed. She whispered to her prime minister,
QUEEN: Why does this Wali Dad persist in sending gifts? I have never even heard of him!
MINISTER 1: Why don’t you discourage him? Send him a gift so rich, he can never hope to match it.NARRATOR 4: So in return for the ten horses from Wali Dad, the queen sent back twenty mules loaded with silver.
NARRATOR 2: When the merchant and mules arrived back at the hut, Wali Dad groaned.
WALI DAD: What have I done to deserve this? Friend, spare an old man! Keep two mules and their silver for yourself, and take the rest to the king of Nekabad!
NARRATOR 3: The merchant was gettinguneasy, but he could not refuse such a generous offer. So not long after, he found himself presenting the silver-laden mules to the king of Nekabad.
NARRATOR 1: The king, too, was perplexed and asked his prime minister for advice.
MINISTER 2: Perhaps this Wali Dad seeks to prove himself your better. Why not send him a gift he can never surpass?
NARRATOR 4: So the king sent back