The Origin of Sago Tree and Sugar Palm Tree

Folktale from Central Sulawesi

THERE was a poor family in Donggala, Central Sulawesi. The parents had only one child, he was a son. The family was poor because the father was lazy. He did not want to work hard. The person who earned the living was the mother. Everyday she went to the jungle to collect some firewood and sold it at the market. The son always helped his mother.

The mother had repeatedly asked and advised the father to work hard. Sadly, the father always ignored her. Well, something amazing happened. Suddenly the father told the mother that he was bored with their poor lives.

"I want to be rich. I will go to the jungle and open a field. I will plant vegetables and fruits. After the harvest, I will sell them. I'm sure we can get lots of money."

The mother could not believe what she heard. She was absolutely happy to hear that her husband was willing to work hard for their family.

Early in the morning the father went - to the jungle. He was looking for a good place to open a field. Finally, he. found it! He looked at the place carefully. He thought.

'This place is quite good. But, can I open a field here? Am I strong enough?'

Instead of starting to work to open the land the father just sat under a big tree. He thought that he would be very tired to open and clear the land. It was afternoon. The husband was hungry. He went home. When he arrived, the mother welcomed him nicely.

She asked, "How's the field?"

"I's OK" answered the father shortly. The wife did not continue to ask. She thought his husband was too tired to work. Well,.she did not know that her husband spent the whole morning until afternoon just sitting under a bi[ tree.

On the following day, the father again went back to the jungle. Sadly, he did not work to clear the land, but he just sat under the big tree.

"What if I'm tired later?" that's what the father always thought.

Days passed by and every time the wife asked her husband about the field, he always answered, "It's OK."

The wife was so curious, she wanted to know how the field was. bo she secretly went to the jungle. She followed her husband. The woman saw her husband sitting under a big tree.

She asked, "Where is the field?"

The husband was so mad when his wife followed and asked him about the field. He said bad things to her! The man left his wife in the jungle and went home. The woman was crying. She could not control her emotion. She was extremely sad. She walked and when she found a small pond she slowly put her feet in the water.

At home, the man felt guilty. Together with his son, they went to the jungle. They found the woman standing at the pond. Strangely, the woman had turned into a sago tree. The man was screaming. He apologized, but it was too late! The son also felt very sad. He ran and hugged his mother. The son also slowly changed into a sago tree. The man then ran and jumped to the pond. When the water touched his feet, he slowly became a sugar palm tree. ***

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