Tuesday, September 8, 2009


Before we headed into the Dolomite mountains from Seis, my friend Tony and I found ourselves waiting for some other people in our group, and since he couldn't remember it, I told him the story of Rumpelstilskin.
The next day, the subject of my telling this story came up a few times, and I was asked to tell it again. At the end of the day, once I had already crawled into bed, a couple of friends from the expedition came into my room to hear the story, and were soon joined by a few others. I told the full version of Rumpelstiltskin, which has an ending that is both satisfying and not. To remedy this, I told a version of the story "Princess Gorilla and the New Kind of Water," complete with my own embellishments, including monkey noises, Baboon advisors, and an ending extolling the virtues of allowing a princess to choose her own husband, or even no husband at all. I am not sure I am telling it the way it appears in print, but I like my version well enough to stand by it anyway.
The next night, a number of my classmates wanted to hear it again. Others had missed it, and really wanted to be sure they would get to hear it. We packed our room (which had three bunk beds and not much room for more than that) and I told both stories again. As you might imagine, the story got longer and better every time.

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