A Bean Story
Long long ago, there were an honest and hardworking old man and his wife living in a village.
One day when she was cleaning in the house, a bean on the floor rolled and rolled until it entered a kitchen oven.
He looked into the oven and tried to pick it up because he took great care of even a single bean, when he was suddenly sucked through the hole inside the oven into the lower world.
He found a statue standing there and moving its mouth.
The statue was eating the bean.
The statue said to him,
“I thank you for your delicious bean.
I’ll teach you something good.
Go straight along this road, and you’ll find a red house and a black house.
You have only to help to make MANJU(Japanese-style bun stuffed with bean paste) at the red house.
You have only to mimic the sound of a rooster at the black house.
He walked along the road as he was told by the statue.
First,he visited the red house, where the mice were preparing for a wedding.
He helped to make MANJUs as he was told by the statue.
The mice were so pleased that they presented him a red wonderful KIMONO to him.
Next, he passed the black house.
He saw the ogres gambling there through a window.
He mimicked the sound of the rooster as he was told by the statue.
The ogres, thinking it was morning, quickly ran away in a fuss.
They left much money there.
He returned home and told the whole story to his wife.
Overhearing this, a greedy old woman next door encouraged his greedy husband to do the same thing.
He poured many beans into his kitchen oven and holed himself into the lower world.
He shouted to the statue, “Give me a reward.”
Unwillingly the statue taught him the same thing.
Though he came to the red house, he hated to help the mice and mimicked the sound of a cat,” Meow.”
But he was severely bitten by the rats.
When he came to the black house, he was so surprised at the sight of the ogres that he couldn’t mimic the sound of a rooster.
The ogres found him and took him somewhere.