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The Magic Shoes and Staff

" Very soon a wonderful town rose up, which the young king wished to be as much as possible like the home he had left, only larger and fuller of fine buildings than it. When the town was made, he wished it to be full of happy inhabitants, with temples in which they might worship, priests to teach them how to be good, markets in which food and all that was needed could be bought, tanks and rivulets full of pure water, soldiers and officers to defend the gates, elephants on which he and his wife could ride, everything in fact that the heart of man or woman could desire.

The first thing Putraka and Patala did after the rise of their own town, which they named Patali-Putra [1] after themselves, was to get married in accordance with the rites of their religion; and for many, many years they reigned wisely over their people, who loved them and their children with all their hearts. Amongst the attendants on those children was the old woman who had shown kindness to Putraka in his loneliness and trouble. For when he told Patala the story of his life, she reproached him for his neglect of one to whom he owed so much. She made him feel quite ashamed of himself, and he flew away and brought the dear old lady back with him, to her very great delight.

31. Which of the people in this story do you like best?

32. Do you think Putraka deserved all the happiness which came to him through stealing the wand, the shoes and the bowl?

33. Can you suggest any way in which he could have atoned for the wrong he did to the brothers whose property he took?

34. What is the chief lesson to be learnt from this story?

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