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Raja Omas

A Baby in a Pumpkin

Raja Omas >> Edisi Indonesia

Folklore from North Sumatra

IN Simalungun, North Sumatra, there was a king with six wives. Although the king had six wives, he did not have a child yet. Therefore, he decided to marry another woman. His seventh wife gave him a son.

The king named him Raja Omas. The other six wives were jealous. The king only loved his seventh wife and the baby. Those six wives had a bad plan. They got rid of the baby by putting him in a big pumpkin and let it drift in a river.

On the following day, an old woman was washing her clothes in the river. She heard a baby crying. She was surprised to see a baby boy inside a pumpkin and brought him home.

The old woman took good care of Raja Omas until he became a handsome and diligent man. To help the old woman, Raja Omas opened a coffee shop. He also provided tuak, a traditional drink. His tuak was very delicious. Many people came to his coffee shop to drink his tuak.

In the mean time, the king was ill. He only could be cured by drinking a very delicious tuak. He heard that there was a young man sold delicious tuak. So, the king went there. Right after the king met Raja Omas, the king knew that Raja Omas was his son.

Raja Omas said, "It is impossible, Your Majesty. I have a mother. She is inside."

But then, the old woman told the truth. Raja Omas was not her son. She found Raja Omas in the river.

Later the king brought him in the palace. After that, the king asked Raja Omas to get married. So, Raja Omas decided to visit the villages to find the right woman. When he arrived in a big lake, he saw some women were taking a bath.

He stole one cloth. He did not know that those women were angels from heaven. Because her cloth was stolen, one angel could not fly to go back to the heaven. She was sad. Raja Omas then asked the angel to marry him. Then they got married and had a baby boy.

However, the angel found her cloth. She was so happy, now she could fly to the heaven. Right before she flew, she wanted to grab her son. But Raja Omas moved very fast. He wanted his son to stay with him and did not go to heaven.

The angel was angry. She turned into saringgon, a typhoon. To protect his son, Raja Omas covered the baby with some smelly ingredients. The angel hated smelly ingredients. Since then, mothers in Simalungun also covered their babies with some smelly ingredients every time they hear saringgon. They are afraid that saringgon would take their babies away. ***

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