WHY DO CATS CHASE RATS? – A translated folklore
A long time ago, at the end of the year when humans hadn’t come in the world yet, the God told the animals, “ A New Year is coming soon. All of you come to my place in the morning of January 1st to greet me. Then I will make the one who comes 1st till the 12th as a leader of the year.”
After the meeting as the New Year was nearing, the careless Cat forgot when to greet the God, and asked his friend, the Rat. But the Rat lied, “ It’s on the morning of January 2nd .”
So the animals prepared for their journey. As the Ox is a slow runner he started to walk from the night of the New Year’s Eve. The Rat saw that and slyly climbed up the Ox’s tail and slept on his back till the morning.
On the New Year’s Day when the Ox came near the God’s house, the Rat quickly jumped off the Ox and greeted God as the 1st animal of the year. Thus, the Rat is the 1st and the Ox is the 2nd.
Then came the Tiger running at full speed and became 3rd. Following the Tiger, came the Rabbit hopping left and right and became 4th.
After that came the Dragon as 5th, Snake as 6th, Horse as 7th and Sheep as 8th in the order.
The Monkey and the Dog has always been as bad terms thus meeting upon each other they started fighting, while the Rooster tried to slip between them. Thus the Monkey became 9th, Rooster 10th and the Dog as 11th in the order.
12th animal was the Boar, even if he is a fast runner he lost his way and thus became the last leader.
On the next morning, came the Cat to greet the God. He looked around and saw no one. So with a happy scream he said, “ I am the 1st Leader!”
God took a pity on the Cat and said, “ The Greeting was for yesterday.”
The Cat was confused. He said, “ …but, Rat said its today!”
Later the Cat found out from God that Rat has become the 1st Leader. He realized that he was tricked by the Rat. So the Cats became very angry and from this day onwards he started chasing the Rats forever.
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