Thursday, November 17, 2011

The Tortoise and the Hare, The Sequel

Picture "Master Oogway" kindly provided by  KungFuPandaWorld
For my next Toastmaster speech, I need to write an original story with a twist, this was a difficult for me to thing to do amongst the craziness and busyness of life, I managed to write a draft sequel to the "Tortoise and the Hare" in the chaos of it all.  I will probably do some further refinements as the speech comes closer.  Here it is, enjoy:

The Hare was humiliated after losing the race to the Tortoise, 10 years later the Hare was a Broken Bunny! The Hare never quite forgave himself for falling asleep at the race, he kept on revisiting that event over and over again in his mind everyday since then.

He pondered "How could I have lost that race, everyone knew I was faster...everyone thought I was better looking, everyone thought I was the one that was sure to be a success in life".  He sure was a dashing young bunny back then, with great looks and speed...

It did not stop there, the Tortoise got the promotions, everyone loved being around the Tortoise, the Tortoise always made time for everyone, even animals he did not like.  The Hare was a sorry picture of what he was before, he looked 10 years older than his age, his face showed his bitterness, and his words reflected it...he was the heaviest bunny in town...

The Hare had heard of the wizard Owl, which was the Tortoise's mentor, he decided to go visit the Owl, after all, if the Owl could help a loser like the Tortoise to become a winner, surely the Owl could help him. He arrived at the Owl's tree, to find the Owl meditating upside down...The Owl sensed him, opened his eyes, and said to him, "so its taken you ten years to come and see me, tell me how can I help you".  The Hare poured out his anger, his hatred for the Tortoise, and hatred for himself...

The Owl listened carefully, and asked, what do you think could change all this...The Hare paused and then he thought "it was that darn race, if I had won it, things would all be different..." The Owl paused, he picked up a twig, and he put a magical spell on it, he said to the Hare "take this, go home, picture in your mind the event you want to change, and break the twig...it will take you back in time to change any event you want..."

The Hare was delighted, finally he got "a second bite of the cherry", he took the twig and kissed the Owl's feathers... He went home, and he pictured the race in his mind...and broke the twig, all of the sudden he was transported back in time to the race.  He was there, the Tortoise was there, the crowd was there, all 10 years ago...The Hare said "ahh, I am going to win today! nothing will stop me, I will not sleep today no matter how tired I get"

So the siren went off, off they went, the Hare ran, and he ran, he started to feel tired, and he passed the place he slept before..."ahh I am not going to fall for that one he said..." He kept running, he went passed the carrot farm, and he felt really hungry.  He thought, since he was so far ahead, he would stop and have a quick bite, he stopped and ate the carrots, they were so delicious, he had not enjoyed such succulent carrots for ten years, then he was full, but he kept on eating....as he was eating and eating he saw the tortoise pass him by, so he jumped up  startled and started sprinting again, he felt really uncomfortable running with such a full stomach.

He ran and he ran, and then he came across a beautiful female Hare who needed some help to take a splinter out of her leg, being so far ahead again, and enjoying a youthful body again, he stopped to help her, soon he was lost in her eyes, and was captured by her beauty, he lost track of time, and soon the tortoise passed him again...He thought "Just a bit longer, I really want to get this foxy Hare's number!",  he lost track of time, from a distance he saw that the tortoise was slowly inching to the finish line....

He said to the female Hare, "Stay put babes, I will be back...", and he sprinted as hard, and as fast as he could, he ran and he ran, like he never ran before in his life.  The Tortoise was almost at the finish line, the hare lunged and landed on the Tortoise's shell with a thud, he bounced and he flew over the Tortoise and won the race...He face burst with pride. and he forgot all about the Foxy Hare he left behind, "I did it, I did it, I did it", then all of the sudden he was then suddenly teleported to the present moment.  He thought how great things would be now...when he open his eyes, he got to where he left off, nothing seemed to have changed, he went to work the Tortoise was still his boss.

He stomped back to the Owl's tree, and demanded an explanation why things had not changed.. The Owl looked at him and said "I have done all I can please go and ask the Tortoise what his secret is".  The Hare's pride kept him from approaching the Tortoise, until one day he could take it no more, he asked the Tortoise to go out for a drink of wheat juice, down near the non-alcoholic bar next to the lake.

He poured his heart out to the Tortoise and also blamed him for almost half of the things that happened to him.  The Tortoise looked at him compassionately, and said...my friend, "I have always wanted to speak to you about it, but I never thought you would want to listen to what I had to say to you, since you ask, I will tell you...

See your problems lies not in the fact that you got defeated, not just with our race but with anything, I lose in many things myself, we all have our ups and downs.  The problem lies in your attachment to your loses and the attachment you have to your wins.

For me it did not really matter if I lost or won the race, I would have just gotten on with the rest of my life, and forgotten about the race...I just was more concerned about finishing the race and moving on to my next challenge, one day at a time...I know my weaknesses, but I overcome it by just keeping myself present at the task at hand, doing that and only that, and also not getting attached to the results good or bad...I know I may be a bit simple, but I find that works for me.  I did not believe it at first too, when the Owl revealed it to me"

The Hare was struck by this, "could it really be that simple, could it really be that it is not what happens to you good or bad, but how much you are attached to it" he thought...It was a hard pill for the Hare to swallow, but he knew deep down inside that it was true...for when he reflected back to the days in his life when he felt most alive, he could not find any attachments...

The Tortoise did not give up on his friend the Hare, and taught him the Tortoise Meditation Technique, the slow Tortoise Breathing Method, the Tortoise Tai Chi Form.  This gave the Hare a practical way to build these skills, and learn to be more mindful, present and compassionate in life.  The Hare learnt much from his former nemesis who was now his closest friend and mentor and went on to truly live his life....



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