Friday Scoop Of Tales – Part 14

Finnish Folktale: The Bear's Share

Once upon a time, in a village in Finland, a farmer was ploughing his fields.

A bear who was passing by the fields stopped and asked the farmer, “Good morning, what are you up to so early in the morning.”

“I’m ploughing the fields. Then, I have to harrow and plant the wheat and turnips as well,” replied the farmer.

The bear loved the wheat and turnips, and the thought of eating them made his mouth water. He said, “I can help you with your work. In exchange for it, would you share half of your produce with me?”

The farmer agreed, and both of them worked together for months. When the autumn arrived, the farmer asked the bear looking at the turnip field, “Do you want the part that grows under the ground or the part that grows above?”

The bear observed the green turnip tops and decided to take the part that grows above the ground.

Then, the farmer took him to the wheat field and asked the same question. The bear looked at the dried-up wheat stocks and said that he wanted the part that grows below the ground. The farmer chuckled and agreed.

The next winter, the farmer invited the bear for dinner. When the bear tasted the turnips and the wheat bread that the farmer served him, he gulped it down as he had never eaten anything as delectable. He said, “This is delicious. What is this?”

The farmer responded, “This is the produce from the fields that we planted together.”

The bear was shocked by the answer. He thought aloud, “But my wheat and turnips don’t taste the same.”

The farmer couldn’t stop laughing. And the bear kept on wondering why.


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