The Ants, The Bees, and The Monkeys


Once upon a time there was a forest at the bottom of a hill. There was a huge tree on the top of the hill. No one from the forest wanted to climb the hill to get to the tree. One year there was a drought. There was not much food in winter. Next spring too, very few flowers blossomed and even fewer fruits yielded in the summer following spring. Now, it was certain that there would be not a lot of food for the winter.

That spring, the ants began to realize that the food would be scarce in winter and they began planning to gather food such that they would not starve in the winter. Although the ants vigorously started to search for food, they could not gather much in the forest. One day a few ants were talking about how hard it was to find anything edible in the forest and their worries about the possible shortage of food in winter. They mentioned that there should be a better plan to gather more food so that they would not have to succumb to cannibalism in winter. The bees who, also realizing the shortage of food, were briskly searching for flowers in the spring, heard the ants’ conversation. They flew down to the ants and said their story was the same too. The bees then proposed to the ants that if they looked for food together, may be they could find something in the forest. The ants agreed and the pact was made that the bees would look for food in the branches of high trees and the ants would rummage the ground. Everyday while the ants and the bees were looking for food, they passed the monkeys. The monkeys never seem to have thought about storing food for winter. One time a bee flew to the monkey and asked whether the monkeys would join the bees and the ants to search for food which would be scarce in the winter. The monkey laughed at the bee and said, “We are doing our own business here and there is no one to go look for food. We do not have so many people like you guys to go looking for food. Besides why are you looking for food there is plenty around here.” The bee was astonished. “Instead of fighting with each other why don’t a few of you guys join us,” the bee asked. The monkey got so mad he tried to snap the bee in his palm. The bee flew back to save her life.

Every night the bees and the ants searched for food all day and in the evening they got together to talk about their progress of the day. Despite trying their best to find food in the forest, they had only amassed food enough to last a few weeks even if they ate conservatively. In that case they were going to starve that winter. A new source of food was needed. After brainstorming for many days it was finally decided that they will search for alternate sources of food. The next day a bee came in late to the evening meeting. She looked very tired but very excited. When her colleague ants and the bees asked her what was wrong with her, she mentioned to them that she had gone to the big tree atop the mountain and she had seen the mountain full of flowers and fruits. She even brought some sweet nectar from one of the flowers for her ant and bee colleagues. Everyone thanked her for her courage and they made a plan to climb the gigantic hill and get to the tree so that they could start collecting food for the winter. The next morning at dawn, the bees carried the ants on their backs to the mountain top where the tree was. They got there early in the evening and after enjoying the mesmerizing sunset, they retreated to a good night’s rest.

The next morning the ants began digging holes in the ground for themselves and for the bees to make their hives. The wind was too strong to make hives on the tree branches. The bees then flew around the tree to locate flowers with sweet nectar. The whole summer they made tunnels and hives and collected food. While the ants and the bees were busy collecting food, the monkeys were busy fighting among themselves. They had heard that the ants and the bees had left for the huge tree atop the mountain but they could care less. They completely ignored the fact that the necessity to collect the food for winter.

After the summer the winter brought severe cold. The bees and the ants had warm beds and were enjoying the food they had collected earlier that year but the monkeys neither had food nor beds to sleep in. They had heard of the bees and the ants going to the big tree atop the mountain and they thought we should go there; there must be food. So the monkeys started climbing the mountain. They were very rowdy and made loud noises, broke branches of the trees that they climbed, and uttered stupid things that made no sense. The ants and the bees saw the monkeys coming. Being very kind animals, they thought the monkeys would be hungry after climbing such a huge hill and they decided to collect the fruits fallen from the tree so that the monkeys could eat them.

When the monkeys reached the hilltop, they were very tired and cold. They were offered with the fruits that the bees and the ants had collected for them. But the monkeys saw the warm beds of the bees and the ants and all the honey and the fruits that they had stored for themselves and the monkeys wanted them all. They climbed the tree and started shaking it hard in the process they broke its branches and shook off a lot of its flowers and fruits. The monkeys then began demanding the warm beds of the ants and the bees.

“We are the rulers of this tree because we are the rulers of the forest,” they said. The bees and the ants retaliated saying that they informed the monkeys that there will be no food in the winter but the monkeys did not want to join them. “Therefore, the monkeys do not have the right to come and demand things that they did not work for,” said the bees and the ants. “We came to the forests first. So we should be the first to enjoy the good things from this tree,” argued the monkeys. There was a lot of argument back and forth because the bees and the ants did not want to give up their food since they had worked hard for it. The monkeys were not going to be satisfied until they got warm beds and delicious honey full of nectar. The argument slowly turned into a quarrel which then turned into a full fledged battle. The monkeys picked the fruits the bees and the ants had offered them and started throwing them at the tunnels of the bees and the ants. They also picked up the branches and started destroying the beehives and they pocked big holes in the walls of the tunnels. They started terrorizing the hilltop.

The ants and the bees got really angry at the monkeys now. They decided to get rid of the monkeys. The bees swarmed out of their hives and started stinging the monkeys. The ants too, came out of the tunnels and started biting them. The monkeys could not bear the pain and they started running away from the stinging of the bees and the biting of the ants. They scattered in all directions. Some of the monkeys were stung in the eyes so they were blinded and they died falling off the mountain top. Some of them were bitten in their legs so severely that they could not step with their feet and they too fell of the cliff. A few remaining monkeys ran away into the forest and vowed never to mess with the bees and the ants again. Even when they were fleeing they were quarreling which direction to go to. The ants and the bees were sad that their homes were destroyed by the monkeys. But they picked up their spirits knowing that the monkeys were never going to come back again. They managed to rebuild their homes such that it was warm again protecting them from the cold outside. They shared their food and lived happily ever after.

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Filed under My Life My Thoughts, Nepali Bedtime Stories

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