Why The Antelope Lives In The Bush – a story about the goat and the antelope.
Why The Antelope Lives In The Bush
A long time ago, in an ancient community, the Goat and the Antelope lived with their owners in their family house. The Goat and Antelope were herbivores; they were not expected to eat anything other than grass. Still, as they were being tamed, they were continually told to not tamper with the owner’s food supply.
Nevertheless, Goat and Antelope never listened. Every time their owner’s wife would return from the farm with her tubers of yam and some leaves, the Goat and Antelope would sneak out to the same farm and have a share of the food that grows there.
The next day, when the owners of the farm would go to their farm and find that most of their farm produce has been eaten, they immediately know that it was Goat and Antelope’s fault. So with irritation, they would go to them and warn them to never repeat such an action again.
One day, the wife of the farmer went to the farm and returned with the only tuber of yam remaining. They had recently planted yam seeing as it was planting season.
Once she got home, she put a pot of water on the fire and placed the yam on a tray, hoping to peel it first. That was when she remembered that she had left her knife outside. She left the yam on the tray and went outside to get the knife.
When she returned, she realized that her yam was missing. The woman knew that it was Goat who had eaten the yam because she saw him running out of the kitchen using the other door.
“Oh no!” She cried. She immediately looked for a cane and started beating Goat with it. She flogged him till he had wounds all over his body. Antelope rushed in when his friend was being punished.
“Ma, ma, please. Take it easy,” Antelope pleaded on Goat’s behalf, but the farmer’s wife didn’t listen to his plea. She continued to beat him more.
“Ma, please!” Antelope continued begging and fell to his knees.
“Okay, fine.” The farmer’s wife suddenly stopped beating Goat. “But let me assure you of something, if any of my food produce is eaten again, I will make your life a living hell. We give you all the grasses in the world, why can’t you just be contended with that?” She said in anger and walked away.
Immediately she left, Goat fell down. The beatings had weakened him, and he couldn’t stand. Antelope rushed out to get some leaves for his treatment.
“I’m tired. So tired of this place,” Antelope complained bitterly, as he was treating his friend.
“Look at that! I was the one who was flogged yet you are the one feeling the pain,” Goat said and laughed.
“I am not kidding, Goat. These people treat us so badly.”
“And we have to endure it. They provide us with food, which is something that we won’t be able to get on our own. We can’t survive the outside world on our own, you know.”
Antelope listened to all that his friend said, and even when he did not agree with him, he didn’t argue with him either.
Another evening, Antelope was so hungry that he wandered around the back of the house. When he found vegetables sitting on a tray, he ate them up. When the farmer’s wife saw what Antelope did to her leaves, she flogged Antelope to a state of stupor.
It was Goat, Antelope’s friend, that found him. He treated Antelope’s wounds. While receiving treatment, Antelope began to cry.
“What’s the matter?” Goat asked his friend.
“We can’t keep living like this, my friend. We can’t keep surviving on only grasses and tuber peals. Sometimes, we also want to be a part of the meal they eat. If they can’t give us that, then we will have to be taking it by force,” Antelope said.
“We have been doing that, and you see what they do to us afterward,” Goat added.
“And it’s not fair. Look, I don’t know how long I can endure these insults. It’s getting too much,” Antelope complained bitterly.
“Well, I am ready to take these insults for as long as I live,” Goat said and continued treating his friend. Antelope heaved a heavy sigh, sat back, and had his wounds treated in peace.
The next morning, the farmer’s wife decided to cook beans for her entire family. As she was sieving the beans, trying to separate them from the stones, it began to rain. She left the beans in the kitchen and went to get some buckets to collect rainwater. Immediately after she left, Goat and Antelope entered the kitchen and ate all the beans.
When the farmer’s wife returned, she noticed the beans were gone. She knew that the Goat and Antelope were responsible for it. But this time, she didn’t do anything. She waited for her husband to return. As soon as her husband entered the house, she began complaining.
“They have done it again. The two animals you brought to this house have finished eating all the food in the house, and now there is absolutely nothing for you to eat.”
Immediately the farmer heard this, he got so angry because he was very hungry and looking forward to a wonderful meal. Together, he and his wife rushed to meet Goat and Antelope, and they flogged them. They beat them so hard that the two had to be taken to the hospital for recovery.
After they returned, Antelope began complaining bitterly, “I can’t take this embarrassment anymore. I am leaving this house, and I am leaving this instant.”
“Antelope, my dear friend, please don’t. We have to endure the pain. If we keep enduring, we will become strong, and the pain will no longer hurt us,” Goat said, and Antelope became appalled.
“Are you serious? Can you even listen to yourself right now? You want me to continue staying here and enduring all of these punishments. No! I will not do that,” Antelope said. After a continuous plea from Goat, Antelope’s friend, he finally stayed back.
Another day, Goat and Antelope once again ate the farmer’s yam. When the wife discovered it, she again flogged them mercilessly. Antelope got angry.
“No, I can’t keep living like this.” This time, he didn’t listen to Goat’s plea. He ran away before the farmer would come back and give him another round of beating. So because Antelope believed she could fend for himself, he escaped punishment.
Goat on the other hand, who didn’t believe in himself, stayed back, and she was flogged that night as well. After the meeting, she stood up and dusted herself down.
Just so that she can survive, Goat told herself that because of the punishment, she was stronger, and could survive other beatings.
Never doubt your abilities, especially if they will help you break out of a toxic relationship.