Stories & Tales
The Little Elephant

In the country of elephants, an elephant felt that her little son never ate anything. She was worried and called to him: “Come and eat this delicious plate, my dear little elephant. I cooked it especially for you.” But the little elephant didn’t want any of the special food, he only wanted to eat bananas. So the mother said “Okay, take these bananas and eat as much as you want.” But the little elephant refused to eat. “What’s wrong my son?” asked the mother, “You asked me for bananas and here they are.”


“No, no,” replied the little elephant, “I want bananas.”


“Here they are my little son, take and eat some.”


“But,” whined the little elephant “These are yellow bananas.” The mother tried to explain to her son that all bananas in the world are yellow, that there weren’t any red bananas in the world, and that the yellow bananas she had for her son were healthy and delicious, but he would not be persuaded. Soon the mother’s patience ran out and she became angry and scolded him,  


“Listen! If you do not eat these bananas, you will not be happy.” But the little elephant would not listen. The mother didn’t know what to do. She wanted her son to eat but it was impossible to find red bananas. She discussed it with her husband and asked him, “What shall we do? Where can we get him red bananas from?” The husband replied: “It is very easy. We can paint the yellow bananas red.”


The mother said happily: “What a great idea my dear. You are very smart.”


The mother painted a banana red and called her son over to eat it. He was very excited and came quickly but when he saw the bananas he was disappointed, he said “No mother, this is a yellow banana painted in red. I want real red bananas. These are fake.” The mother tried to convince her son saying, “If you do not eat, you will not be happy,” but the little elephant refused to listen.


Once again, the mother didn’t know what to do. Her son refused to eat anything and wanted red bananas. So, she went to her husband and told him that their plan had not worked. A few days later, the husband told the story of his son to his brother who laughed and said: “I will handle this. Don’t worry, I will talk to your son.”


The uncle of the little elephant visited his brother’s house and was welcomed by the mother who said, “Come in. Come my little son, your uncle wants to see you, he came here especially to bring you red bananas.” The little elephant was very excited, but the uncle told him, “If you want something, you have to look for it. For example, if you want a piece of cake you have to go get it at the confectioner.”


“Yes,” replied the little elephant, “and if I want a chocolate bar, I have to go to the grocer and I will have to pay for it.”
“That’s right,” said the uncle “and now, you want red bananas? Well then you have to look for them, then pick them up and come back here.”


“Okay uncle. Let’s go,” replied the little elephant. The uncle warned him that the red bananas were very far away and that they would have to walk a long distance to get to them but the little elephant insisted that he would walk as far as he had to to find red bananas.


After some walking, the little elephant got tired and asked, “Oohh uncle, when will we arrive? I am so tired. We are walking since the morning and the sun will set soon!”
“Of course dear,” replied the uncle, “You asked for a rare thing and you have to handle all the consequences.”


“Oohh, is it far from here?”


“No,” replied the uncle, “look out there at the horizon, do you see the banana trees? I think we will find some red bananas there. Let us hurry up to get there before sunset.” Again, the little elephant complained that he was tired and hungry, but when his uncle offered him a bite from a sandwich he had brought with him the little elephant refused to eat.


Finally, they arrived. The little elephant was exhausted. He yelled “Oohh, oohh, where are the red bananas, uncle ?”


“We will search for them, dear” replied the uncle.


“But there are only green bananas on these trees,” observed the little elephant.


The uncle explained to the little elephant that the green bananas are bananas which are not ripe yet and that the yellow bananas further on were ripe bananas.


“Come on, try one” he offered, but the little elephant insisted that he wanted red bananas so they kept on searching. Until they found a branch with only one banana on it, the banana was red. The little elephant became very excited and he said, “Look uncle, a red banana, I will pick it and peel it and eat it and it will be delicious!” But after he had tasted the banana the little elephant started to cry.


“Why are you crying?” asked the uncle.


“The banana is spoiled and tastes terrible” replied the little elephant.


“Now do you believe that there are no red bananas in the world, and that the red bananas are the spoiled ones?” asked the uncle.


“So, there are no red bananas and I was wrong all the time?” asked the little elephant.


“Yes, you were wrong and stubborn” replied the uncle and I brought you here to convince you that there are no red bananas in the world.


“Oohh…How I am hungry!” said the little elephant.


“You are hungry and wrong.” Replied his uncle, “Here…eat some yellow bananas and never ask for the impossible again.”


The little elephant tasted the yellow bananas and said: “These are the most delicious bananas I have ever tasted!”