Pic.: Sheela Krishnamony
It was a hot afternoon. In a jungle, a lion, who was tired and thirst, wandered in search of water. Finally, when he came near a pond of water, the lion saw a leopard there. The leopard, too, was tired and thirsty and had reached there in search of water.
“What are you doing here?” the lion blasted with his kingly arrogance.
The leopard did not like the way the lion treated him. So, provoked by lion’s arrogance, and gathering all his courage, he reacted, “What are YOU doing here?”
Lion, not used to such a reaction from his subjects, pretended as if he had not heard what leopard had just said. “Get off my way,” he blasted, “let me drink first.”
“I am telling you the same,” the leopard did not want to concede, “wait till I finish… You very well know that I was here first.”
The lion went into a rage and threw his paw at the leopard… The leopard tried to grab lion’s neck… and they both got entangled in a fierce fight… The dust and violent roar filled the air and there was unease in the jungle…
Then, while they rolled there on the ground, bruised and bleeding, unwilling to give up, the warring animals heard an unusual sound in the air… Looking up, they saw a scary sight: scores of hungry vultures circling over them! The vultures were waiting for the battle to be over… It did not matter to them as to who won and who lost – the lion or the leopard… What mattered to them was the flesh, their meal… and, they were waiting!
Yes, both, lion and the leopard, could easily realize this… The very next moment, they gave up their fight… Then, standing side by side near the pond, they quietly drank water – for which they had come there – and went their way… Yes, hiding their tails between their legs!
Well, for a change, let me not ask that familiar question at the end:
“What is the moral of the story?”