Monday, July 12, 2010

The Sad Sad Story of the Princess and the Frog

One upon a time, a beautiful young princess with very bad eyesight went for a walk in the woods, playing with her favorite golden ball.  Her mother the queen called after her to wear her glasses, but the princess pretended that she didn't hear her and tossed her specs into a nearby bush.  What need had she for glasses on a walk in the woods?  When she came to a cool spring, she sat down to rest.  While she sat, she tossed her ball up into the air over and over, catching it as it fell.

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But then, she threw it so high that she missed it.  Her depth perception was not very good, either.  The ball hit the ground and rolled until it fell into the spring.  And the spring was so deep that no one, especially the pirncess without her glasses, could see the bottom.  The princess began to weep, offering a plea to anyone who could hear her: "If only I could get my ball back, I would give my fine clothes, my jewels... I would give everything I had in the world."  She cried so hard and so long that her eyes swelled shut so that now, without her glasses and with her boo-hooing, she could see virtually nothing.


While she wept, a frog poked his head out of the water and said, "What is with all this blubbering?  How is a frog supposed to sleep?"

"Alas and boohoo," cried the Princess, squinting in the direction of his voice.  "What can you do you me, you nasty frog?  My golden ball has fallen in the spring."

The frog, who was quite capable of retrieving the ball, thought about her dilemma.  At last he spoke.  "I may be a nasty frog, but I can dive deep into the water.  Retrieving your ball is no problem.  Hovever..." (and here he paused), "I do not want your fine clothes, your jewels.  Instead, you must love me and take me home and let me live with with you and you must reward me with a kiss upon my froggy lips."

The Princess didn't need to think too long about this.  Not only did she not have to give up her fine clothes and jewels... she could easily get her ball back and then outrun the frog.  What, after all, were the odds of an amphibian showing up at the palace?  She quickly agreed.

The frog dived into the spring and soon he emerged with the golden ball, which he bounced to the princess with his froggy nose.

By then the princess had stopped crying for long enough to see the ball.  She leapt up, grabbed it, and headed through the woods doing a broken field run around trees and stumps.  The frog called after her, "Hey!  Wait! We had a deal."

The Princess ignored him and kept running until she reached the palace.

That night, at dinner time, the Princess heard a strange noise - tap, tap - squish, splut, tap, tap, squish, splut - as if someone very wet was slowly coming up the marble staircase.  Soon there was a knock at the door, and an amphibious voice called out,
'Open the door, my princess dear,
Open the door to thy true frog love here!
And mind the words that thou and I said
By the fountain cool, in the greenwood shade.'

The Princess set, who never had retrieved her glasses,  ran to the door.  When she opened it, she saw... nothing.  (I already told you... her glasses were in the bush.)  The frog stood there, quite tired from his trek through the woods.

When he began again, "Open the door, my princess dear..." the Princess slammed the door shut and went back to her dinner..  As she slurped her soup, the King inquired who was at the door.
"Oh, no one," said the Princess.  Again the frog knocked again at the door, and said:
'Open the door, my princess dear,
Open the door to thy true frog love here!
And mind the words that thou and I said
By the fountain cool, in the greenwood shade.'

The King turned to the Princess,  "It sounds to me like you made a promise, and so you must be true to your word.  Open the door and let the frog in."

With a sigh the Princess set down her soup spoon and tromped to the door.  She opened it so that the frog could enter, and stomped back to her soup.  But the frog followed, and hopped right up on the table beside her plate.  In fact, he started to eat off her plate.  When he was finished, the frog said,
"Now I am tired.  If you would be so kind, please carry me to bed and place me upon your pillow."

The princess was none to pleased but her father reminded her that she had given her word and so, with a giant sigh, she took the frog to her bedroom and placed him on her pillow, where he slept beside her.  But when she awoke in the morning, the frog was gone... much to the delight of the Princess.  She insisted that the chambermaid search everywhere but there was no sign of the frog.
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Her joy was short-lived, for the next night at dinner, she again heard tap, tap - squish, splut, tap, tap, squish, splut, followed by a knock at the door and the frog's voice:

'Open the door, my princess dear,
Open the door to thy true frog love here!
And mind the words that thou and I said
By the fountain cool, in the greenwood shade.'

Again the Princess opened the door.  Again the frog dined with her and slept with her and slipped away at dawn, and again the chambermaid searched in vain.  The third night, he did the same.  But that morning when the Princess awoke, there was the frog.  This time he said to her, "Now you must kiss me.  When you do, I will be transformed into a handsome prince."  He explained that he was under an enchantment by an evil fairy, who had changed him into a frog until he could be rescued by true love's kiss.

This was starting to sound a bit more appealing to the princess, but she really had no idea what the frog looked like, having spent the last week without her glasses.  So she kissed the bedpost.  She kissed he slippers.  She kissed the royal Basset Hound.  
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And then, the chambermaid, who had been watching all along, kissed the frog...
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...and he was turned into a handsome prince.   "You," said the prince to the chambermaid, "have broken the cruel spell, and now I have nothing to wish for but that you should go with me into my father's kingdom, where I will marry you, and love you as long as you live."
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So while the Princess continued kissing inanimate objects, the chambermaid packed her things and off they went and she lived happily ever after.
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The Princess wandered the palace kissing chairs and scepters and aging hunks of venison and the royal Basset Hound.

If only she had a visual reference, perhaps something 3D where she could feel what the frog looked like, she would be living in a palace today, instead of kissing the dog.

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1 comment:

  1. I have dodged some "frogs" in my life....but this one..ohh la la. And we loved the story time.
    George..There is a follower somewhere in the house. Purrrrr, Hanna

    ReplyDelete