The Two Jars

Andong and his wife, Damao, lived near a river. Andong was a lazy man. He hated work. Damao often. scolded him for his laziness.

One day Damao said. "How. lazy you are, Andong! You don't want to work. You stay in the house all day. All you do is to wait for what our neighbors give. Aren't you ashamed? Why don't you go to the river and catch some fish for supper?"

"I never ask our neighbors to give us food," Andong replied. "If they continue to give us food with- out me asking them, it's not my fault."

The couple's neighbors were generous. They of- ten gave the couple food knowing that Andong was too lazy to work.

So Damao scolded Andong again and again. "All right," he said at last. "I'll go to the river and fish for supper."

It had become dark and so he took a lamp to help him find the way. He also took a basket along to put the fish in.

On the way to the river, he had to pass by two mango trees. Under each tree stood an earthen jar.

Andong ran to the first jar. He looked in the jar and saw that it was full of gold coins! He ran to the other jar and like the first, it was full of gold coins too.

"I came here to fish," Andong said," and I must catch some fish or else my wife will have nothing to eat for supper."

Off he went to the river and began fishing. There were lots of fish and soon his basket was filled with them.

"I think I have caught enough fish for supper today," Andong said and away he went, stopping for a while near the mango trees to take another look at the gold coins.

When he got home, he told Damao about the two jars and the gold coins in them.

"Why didn't you get some?" Damao asked. "If we had them, you wouldn't have to go to the river to fish. If we had all the money, we would be rich."

Their two nearest neighbors, Annong and Apiong, had heard Andong tell his wife about the two jars full of gold coins. Unknown to the couple, they made plans to get the gold for themselves. They set out with some rope and a stout bamboo pole, and they soon got to where the jars were.

Annong put his hand in one jar. Apiong put his hand in the other. Both jars were full, all right, but not of gold coins. They were full of carabao manure.

Disgusted, Annong and Apiong ran to river and washed their hands. Both were mad.

"Andong will pay for this," Annong said. "How?" asked Apiong. "We will take the two jars to his house and empty the contents on his batalan," answered Annong.

Without much ado, the two men tied the jars with pieces of rope and hung them on the bamboo pole. Annong placed one end of the pole on his shoulder. Apiong placed the other end on his own.

Soon they got to Andong's house. Andong and Damao were fast asleep. Annong hurried to his own house and got an old buri mat. He took the mat to Andong's house. He spread the mat on the batalan. Then he and Apiong emptied the contents of the jars into the mat and left.

Andong soon woke up and went to the batalan. To his surprise he saw a heap of gold coins on an old buri mat. He did not know that they were the coins he had seen near the river in the evening and which had been dumped there by Annong and Apiong as manure. Now the manure had turned back to gold.

Andong woke his wife and they rejoiced over their good fortune.

"What are we going to do with all this wealth?" Damao asked.

"Let's invest it in business," Andong replied. So with the money, the couple went into business. It was a small business at first, in order not to arouse the suspicion of their neighbors. The business prospered and Andong and Damao became very rich.

Later Andong told his wife:

If you are destined for high places, People may try to put you down, But you will still reach your destiny.