"Charming, charming, upon my honor!" said she, for she had once heard a stylish gentleman say that to a lady. Then she sat down in the best chair she could find. Mrs. Settergren had in tended the children to have their party up in Tommy's and Annika's room, but Pippi stayed calmly in her chair, slapped herself on the knee, and said, looking at the coffee table, "That certainly looks good. When do we begin?"
At that moment Ella, the maid, came in with the coffee pot, and Mrs. Settergren said, "Please come and have some coffee."
"First!" cried Pippi and was up by the table in two skips. She heaped as many cakes as she could onto a plate, threw five lumps of sugar into a coffee cup, emptied half the cream pitcher into her cup, and was back in her chair with her loot even before the ladies had reached the table.
Pippi stretched her legs out in front of her and placed the plate of cakes between her toes. Then she merrily dunked cakes in her coffee cup and stuffed so many in her mouth at once that she couldn't have uttered a word no matter how hard she tried. In the twinkling of an eye she had finished all the cakes on the plate. She got up, struck the plate as if were a tambourine, and went up to the table to see if there were any cakes left. The ladies looked disapprovingly at her, but that didn't bother her. Chatting gaily, she walked around the table, snatching a cake here and a cake there.
"It certainly was nice of you to invite me," she said. "I've never been to a coffee party before."
On the table stood a large cream pie, decorated in the center with a piece of red candy. Pippi stood with her hands behind her back and looked at it. Suddenly she bent down and snatched the candy with her teeth. But she dived down a little too hastily, and when she came up again her whole face was covered with whipped cream.
"Goody!" laughed Pippi. "Now we can play blindman's buff, for we've certainly got a blind man all made to order ! I can't see a thing!"
She stuck out her tongue and licked away the cream.
How the Cannibals drove the People from Insofan Mountain to the Cross River (Ikom)
Category: Nigerian folktales
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