Sometimes our living space (life, body, mind, relationships, etc.) gets cluttered because we add things all the
time but forget to release some of them from time to time. Spring is a great season to get rid of things we do
not need or want anymore. We can throw them or give them away if they are in good condition.
Sometimes we need help to start with because releasing can be difficult. Don’t be afraid to ask for help, and you never know who will show up. If you need and inspiration, read the story.
Good luck with cleaning!
A little prince who didn’t know how to tidy his room
A little prince was sitting in his room, surrounded by things. There were toys, books, games, bicycles, balls of different shapes and sizes, chairs, clothes and whatever else you could imagine. Even a tiny egg is hidden somewhere. He didn’t know what to do.
He picked up one thing and threw it in the air, hoping it will give him space, but the thing doubled itself and fell back. He tried again. Soon, his room, once big and spacious painted in beautiful shades of green, blue, yellow with the night sky on the ceiling, was so cluttered that his family forgot about him. They looked for him everywhere but couldn’t find him. After a while, they stopped searching.
The little prince got angry. He yelled and screamed, but no one heard him. He yelled and screamed again, throwing things around, which made his room cluttered even more. Big tears rolled down his cheeks. He cried in silence. He was a proud and brave little prince and didn’t want people to hear him crying. He felt tired and almost fell asleep when he heard a noise.
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. “
“Hello, anybody there? The little prince said.
“Yes. I am a little bird. I can hear you, but I cannot see you. “
“I am behind the pile of things. ”
Led by the voice, the little bird landed on the top of the pile of things. A little boy was sitting on the floor.
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. I have never seen a nest-like yours. An impressive creation. “
“Thank you, but my nest is too tight for me. I cannot get out, and I don’t have wings to fly. “
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. Interesting. Why don’t you tidy your nest? “
“I tried. I threw one thing, hoping it will disappear, but it returned doubled. Now, I got more things than before. “
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. If you want, I can show you how to do it. “
The boy jumped. “Will you? That would be wonderful. “
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. I will show you a thing, and you will have to decide if you need it or not. If you need it, I will put it on the wall shelves. You have beautiful shelves and cupboards so you should use them. If you do not need a thing, I will put it aside, and later you will decide what to do with it.”
The little prince was not quite so sure about the decision part, but he accepted the offer.
The little bird started showing him things. At first, the little prince was hesitant with decisions, but the little bird was patient. She waited until the little prince made his decision. As they proceeded, the little prince got better and better. Soon the little prince could see walls, shelves, chairs, bed and window. His room was spacious and bright
The little bird was sitting on the window bench. The little prince came closer and looked at her.
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. Now you know what to do with things in the future. “
“Thank you. You are so generous. You helped me clear my room. You saved me even you knew I stole one of your eggs last year. How can I repay you? “
“Chirp, chirp, chirp. You can give me a few sheets of paper for my nest. I am repairing it because new chicks are coming soon. “
“That’s not a problem. Choose any one you desire. “
“Also, promise me to be a protector of all living things, and I will forgive you for stealing my egg. “
The little prince bowed and gave a vow. From that day each morning, the little prince would greet the little bird and her chicks. When it was time for them to leave, he took care of their nest so that the little bird can return if she wants.
He helped in the garden. More trees and bushes grew for birds and animals to find new homes. Things he didn’t need anymore he gave to people who needed them more. Also, he kept his room clean and bright and invited his friends, old and new ones, to come and play.
The king and the queen were proud of seeing their son changed.
In this short essay, I share my experience with storytelling from a storytelling point of view, and what might be in it for you as listener.
I am preparing for the Chennai Storytelling Festival 2021, which starts in February and will run for four weekends. The Festival offers workshops, storytelling sessions, etc. so feel free to join wherever you are in the world.*
In September 2020, I registered for the Festival. It was time to think of a story. I decided to tell a personal story. I knew the beginning of the story but was struggling with the middle and end. Then I heard a storytelling friend telling her personal story experience and bum I knew what I have to do with my story. Putting it on paper was one thing: preparing it for telling was another thing. As January 2021 approached, I knew I should work on crafting the story. Another storytelling friend listened to me telling it, provided feedbacks, listened again and provided feedback.
On Saturday, I had an opportunity to tell it at an Open mic organized by Storytelling Toronto. The story is called Goodbye to my daddy and is about my childhood experience of my father’s death and how I managed to stop greaving.
Here are several feedbacks from the audience:
“Marijana, today is the anniversary of my Dad’s death, great story, I needed to hear this story today. “
“A bear hug from your father. During this time of covid we all know what it is like not to hug children and grandchildren. “
“The anniversary of my Father’s death. Thank you for sharing!
Having experience and feedback from an audience prepares me for the final event.
As you can imagine, storytelling is a process. It doesn’t happen overnight, but that is not your concern. If you are still wondering what is in it for you, let me help you. From experience as the storyteller and listener, I learned stories:
entertain and relax you from the everyday schedule
give you an answer to a problem you might be struggling with
even heal you.
Interestingly, my personal story already helped me, but also it touched other people. Isn’t that amazing.
Also, to gain the most from stories (written or told) keep an open heart and leave expectations. Expectations will keep your walls up, and you might not get what is in it for you.
If you have any question, you can send an email to email@example.com
*Chennai Storytelling Festival 2021, The Healing Power of Story, Storytelling, and Story-enacting. To register to attend any or all CSF 2021 Zoom events, please send an email request to firstname.lastname@example.org. Adults could register for themselves and for young people under their care.
Danas bi slavio osamdeseti rođendan. Šumskim ukrasima,kao za novogodišnje slavlje, okitili bi prozore. Iz starih škrinja izvadili bi šarene bombone. Ukrasili bi stolove, zidove, zastore, divane, krevete, ormare, vrata, prozore. Ni jedno mjesto ne bi ostavili bez ukrasa. Gosti bi dolazili u hrpama. Ne znam što bi im poslužili. Možda bi se nudila riba, ulovljena na Kupi ili Dobri. Bila bi svježa. Osim ribe poslužili bi voće i povrće i vrčeve meda kojeg je ove godine bilo u izobilju. Pčele su dobro radile, vrcalo se dobro a i bili smo pošteni, ostavili smo im dovoljno da zimuju, prestali smo podmetati šećer i tako već godina. Tu odluku donijeli smo na tvoj sedamdeseti rođendan. odlučili smo se da ćemo pčelama ostavljati meda koliko im treba, ne desetinu, ne dvadesetinu nego pola. Sad ga imamo više nego ikad a polovicu podijelimo. Ljudi dođu sami. Pojave se na vratima i neko vrijeme se klate na znajući bili ušli ili bi ostali stajati vani, jesu li došli ili pošli. Kad uđu i kad ih ponudimo medom progovore kao da nikad u životu govorili nisu. Sa svakom novom žlicom sve više i više toga iz njih izlazi. Kad umoče zadnju žlicu oporave se u potpunosti, zagrle nas i krenu dalje. Često nam pišu i blagodare nas, i šalju nam poklone. Šupa nam je krcata poklonima pa i njih, kao i med, dijelimo i nikad ne ponestane.
Naše imanje i kuća pretvorili su se u nepoznatu i daleku zemlju. Korov raste na sve strane, otporan je i jak i koliko god mi njemu pjevali i uvjeravali ga da pođe rasti negdje drugdje on se ne da, raste li raste, i da nemamo košnice oko kojih je sve čisto i uredno pomislila bih da je sve podivljalo i postalo nacionalni park.
Kuća, naša dobra kuća se raspolovila, zidovi su joj popucali, krov je sve slabiji. U isto vrijeme i moj krvotok se pomakao. Počeo je teći od juga prema sjeveru. Tuga se taložila oko prepuknutog srca. I da nije bilo pčela ne bih danas spremala slavlje. Ubole su me i krvotok se vratio u normalu. Ostao mi je ožiljak u predjelu srčane kosti. Za južna vjetra me trza pa ga mažem melemom od meda i borovih grančica, ponekad dodam oblog od lista maline kako si me učio dok smo ih brali.
Ne znam sjećaš li se ovaj ti je rođendan jubilarni. Brojimo li jubilarne rođendane djeca smo. Ja ima pet a ti osam godina i vidim nas kako jurimo livadom i vičemo u prazno osluškujući vlastiti glas. Kad se umorimo promatramo ptice i mrave koji spremaju mrvice za zimu.
Iz kuće su odnijeli šećer iz teglice a baka me na svoj rođendan, ona je ove godine slavila stoti, zamolila da sačuvam teglicu do tvog rođendana, i sad nema šećera. Javili su mi da je ispekla biskvit, zasladila ga je medom, našim medom, tako finim da mu ne možeš odoljeti .
Jesi li znao da se od našeg meda prsti uopće ne lijepe, nije li to začudno? Kažem ti, sve je postalo začudno. Od kad tebe nema sve je utihnulo i zaspalo, kao lijepa rumena Ružica koja čeka stotinu godina da se probudi i da cijeli dvor opet zaživi. Možda i mi čekamo da prođe stotinu godina pa da sve oživi, ali nitko ne zna koja je polazna godina, nitko na zna kada je sve utihnulo.
Pčele o tome šute, ni pod cijenu ugibanja ne žele o tome progovorit. Kažu da sam dovoljno mudra da shvatim i sama. Umorila sam se ili sam odustala vjerujući da se u džungli ne može ništa promijeniti i da je sve izgubljeno, sve dok nisam shvatila da dolaziš na rođendan.
Tata, sretan ti rođendan! Voli te Marijana.
Ponekad se uhvatim u misli da ću se jedno jutro probuditi iz neobičnog sna znajući da je sve to bilo nalik putovanju na Mjesec ili u nepoznatu daleku zemlju.
Maja Bumberák is a fellow storyteller. We met in Zagreb in May 2019 for the first time. The second time we met in England, where we attended a course Word Dancing – Creative Writing and Storytelling.
Maja lives in Budapest and lives stories, tells stories, educates about stories, collect them for almost ten years (I believe I did not misunderstand her biography). Last week she performed on line traditional Hungarian tale The Tree reaching the Sky as a part of the House of Tradition project. She invited her friends to listen/ enjoy the story or the beauty and musicality of the Hungarian language.
Since I don’t know Hungarian I decided to give it a try with an intention to note any association, feeling I might come across during telling. Result of my listening is the story Januska in love.
Maja, thank you for the inspiration.
Januska in love
Januska was a 12 years old boy madly in love with Kishasona, who was two years older. She lived in the neighbourhood and was the most beautiful girl he knew besides his mother. He was the king of playing games on the phone, so he proposed Kishasona to teach her how to play. Kishasona was not interested in playing games. She dreamed of going to a culinary school. She talked about a cooking competition which was held at the end of the school year. The first place would get her additional points for enrolling to a culinary school and a yearly scholarship. She talked about different recipes for pancakes which was these year competition theme.
Januska did not know how to make pancakes. When Kishasona found out, she laughed at him and that hurt. He decided to beat her and enrolled in the competition. He asked the mother to help him, but she was busy with her excel sheets and reports. His older sister looked at him with pity.
„Pancakes? Januska the world is on fire. What is wrong with you? Besides, you can order pancakes. I have no time or interest to teach you how to make them.“
He had nobody else to ask. His grandmothers lived far and did not use mobile phones. He was sitting on the cheery tree, thinking of what to do when he saw an old lady carrying two bags. She came closer and said:
„ Dear boy, can you help me carry my bags? I will pay for it.“ He jumped from the tree.
„ Do you know how to make pancakes?“
„Can you teach me how to make them?“
She lived at the edge of town in a tiny but spotlessly clean house. The back of the house was circumcircle with trees while at the front there was a garden where she grew flowers and vegetables.
She told him his apprenticeship would last four weeks. During that period he will come to her house early in the morning before sunrise and later during the day when he finishes his homework. He also will bring a note from his parents that they allow him to attend cooking lessons.
During the first week of lessons he had to chop woods, cut grass in a garden, mend a fence and help with gardening. Not being used to physical work his arms hurt and he got blisters. On the second week, he was allowed to spend time with her in the kitchen. While he was making bread or cookies, he had to clean floor, wash dishes, help with organising cupboards and place where she kept groceries. He was getting worried so over a tea and cookie he asked:
„Why do I have to do all the work which has nothing to do with learning how to make pancakes?“
„It is preparation time. Before you can master a skill, you need preparation time.“
„Chopping woods and cleaning is what you call preparation time?“
„Yes. How could you start baking or cooking if you do not know to start a fire? How will you or your guests enjoy your masterpiece meal if the house is dirty?“
She seeped tea and eat a cookie which was so delicious she prepared a box for him to take home.
On the third week, she talked about flour, milk, eggs, oil, pan and temperature and asked him to keep notes and to repeat them while he was doing other tasks. On Wednesday of the third week, she showed him how to make a daugh for a pancake and how to bake them. On Friday it was his turn to try. He made daugh threes times, but each time it was not right. Finally, when she approved the daugh, it was his turn to bake pancakes. Five of them finished on a plate rest was on the floor. He spent a whole hour cleaning the mass he made in the kitchen. He got angry and kicked a rock on his way home. The leg hurt, and he lipped all the way and had to stay at home for several days. He returned form more lessons on Wednesday of week four. On Friday, the old lady was happy with his work. She congratulated him and said:
„You know all you need to know. It depends on your decision and passion if you win the competition.“
On the day of the competition, he was nervous. He saw his friends in the crowd pointing at him and laughing, but when he saw Kishasona approaching his table, he forgot her hurting him. He was in love again. He took second place. Kishasona won and gave him a kiss for helping her through the competition. He got the best price he could get.
Inspired by the telling of the storyteller Maja Bumberák.