How the Chicken Lost the Needle that Belonged to the Kite

Here is a story:

A Kite once became friends with a Chicken. They would visit each other everyday. The Chicken went to the Kite when he caught something. She could eat it and was very happy about it. One day, the Kite went to visit the Chicken and gave her some food; she prepared it and the Kite ate and became very happy. Everyone loved each other. The children of the Kite played with the children of the Chicken.

One day, some material that belonged to the Chicken tore and the clothing of the Chicken’s child was also torn. The Chicken went to the Kite and said: You’re my friend, please lend me a needle because my child’s clothing is torn, as well as mine. Their father is not there as he went for a walk. The Kite did not refuse and took a needle and gave it to the Chicken. When the Chicken got the needle, she went home and began sewing. Then she said to herself: Let me add some firewood to the fire so everything will be ready when my husband gets home. The Chicken went and put on some firewood. When she returned, she discovered that the needle was gone. She looked everywhere, but she couldn’t find the needle. When her husband returned home she told him that: Today, our friend the Kite lent me a needle. Listen to what happened: it went missing and I searched for it but I cannot find it. So I don’t know what will happen. Then the husband said: It happens. How do you know that she will come and complain about it? She said: Some people seem happy on the outside, but they are evil at heart. The husband said: Do you really think our friend who likes us and whom we like is evil at heart? Please calm down.

The next morning the Kite came and said: I lent you a needle. My blanket got torn so I have nothing to cover myself. Then the Chicken said: The needle is missing. The Kite said: How could you lose the needle?! Hurry up and find my needle! Then the Chicken, along with her children, began to scratch everywhere. Each of them scratching the ground, going here and there. They found nothing. The Kite said: Hurry up, I want to leave! The Chicken said: Say what you will, but the needle is gone. The Kite said: I will have to try you for it. The Chicken said: You are right to try me because I lost something of yours. Then the Kite said to the Chicken: You have to say how you plan on paying me back! The Chicken said: I have nothing to pay you with, the only thing I can promise is this: I am raising my children and because I have many of them, you can take them one by one until we find the needle. In other words you will stop to take my children if I find the needle for you. What do you think of that? The Kite replied: I agree to this, but I only want the little children, not the grown ones. That is what they agreed upon.

To this day the Chicken is looking for the Kite’s needle and the Kite is continuously taking the chicks one by one.

And that is the end of our story.

The moral of the story: friendship ends when you do something to your friend that he doesn’t like.        

The Mambwe proverbs say: Anyone who wants to be cleverer than his companion is stupid (Ukucenjela apa yacenjele yauzo, ukutumpa).

Subjects: friendship – cheating

Told by Bernard Kungula from Kapufi village (recorded).