(A modern-day story, this time. As usual comments are most welcome :))
Once upon a time, in a barn, lived Mrs. Turkey, now known as Mama Turkey with a brood of the cutest turkey babies you ever saw.
And like all new mothers (this was an Indian Turkey), Mama Turkey did not get any rest, what with all the looking-after of the babies, the feeding and the cleaning, especially the cleaning.
Soon, as all kids do, these babies were able to stand up on their own feet.
“Ah! Finally! Freedom… from the babies, for a few hours.”
Mama Turkey was ecstatic as she envisioned a few hours of solitary pampering at the Bird Beauty Salon.
There was a small hitch.
Who would take care of her babies in her absence? Father Turkey was nowhere to be seen, ever since the birth of the kids.
“That Mr.Turkey, the wastrel, the no-good fellow.”
Mama Turkey cursed her absent husband, sighing, as her mother’s strangely prophetic words rang in her ears, “Keep away from Mr.Turkey, he is bad news, a good-for-nothing. He will never keep you happy.”
The day that had dawned was bright and sunny. Criminal to waste this beautiful day.
Without further ado, Mama Turkey dressed up the kids, donned her sneakers and guided them out of the house in a single file, anticipation of an adventurous day writ large on all the faces.
So much walking couldn’t help but work up a massive appetite. Mama Turkey pointed out the anthill to the kids and as they explored their way into a new form of food, she drooled in salivary lust as she almost tasted those bitter-nutty black ants thronging within the hill.
“Children, eat your fill and some more. This is a delicacy, as rare as they come. God knows when you will next get a chance to eat here.”
Mama Turkey joined the kids in their gourmet adventure.
The meal eaten with gusto and relish left the anthill an empty shell, the industry within it now residing in the tiny quivering bellies of the Turkey babies.
“What a most enjoyable meal. What pleasure! Our life would have been the best life of all if only Man did not enjoy eating us so much. But come Christmas and Thanksgiving, their celebration is not complete if they don’t have us on their plates. They stuff us and carve us and then eat us with oysters and spicy gravy.”
Mama Turkey’s lament continued, “We are cursed. Man, be it a poor man or a lord, none will ever say no to a meal of Turkey. O Woe! Woe betide me. Man is such a glutton. No thought is spared for us poor turkeys.”
Mother Turkey didn’t stop her raving and ranting, eating and raving, eating and ranting.
An ant, who had escaped the unexpected massacre of her family, managed to climb up a tree, beyond the reach of the turkey.
She could only shake her head in disbelief when she heard Mama Turkey’s words.
“Did you enjoy your breakfast, Mama Turkey?” The sad little orphan ant couldn’t resist the barb.
For the first time ever, Mama Turkey was struck speechless.