Dabir, the gray donkey trudged
through the pink sand, his back heavily laden with a load of dates. They
were lying, still attached to their branches, on the blanket, which was
draped across Dabir's back. His master stopped the donkey when they
arrived at the ancient, crumbling stone, step pyramid. He tied the rope
around Dabir's neck loosely and then tethered him to a wooden post that
was sticking out of the sand. Tourists were walking around the area,
taking photos, and gazing up at its tiered shape, as if they were trying
to imagine themselves back in time, viewing the days when the pyramid was
Although most of the pyramid was in
ruins, there was something hypnotic about it, and the tourists felt this.
The hot, desert wind blew sand all over the donkey. Annoying flies buzzed
around his eyes and mouth, trying to get a little moisture, a rare
commodity in the dry arid air. The master unloaded all the dates off of
his back, took the blanket off him and then put a bucket of water down for
Dabir to drink from. Dabir swatted the thick mass of flies away from
himself with his tail.
After a while he became bored. The
loose rope easily came undone when he tugged gently at it with his teeth,
setting him free to do as he chose. He walked slowly around the step
pyramid. Aside from the tourists, he didn't see anything much, except for
a boulder. He walked over to check it out. There was something hanging
from it that looked like a beehive. With nothing better to do, he stood
and watched the bees flying in and out of the beehive. This didn't hold
much excitement for Dabir, so he started kicking a rock around with his
hooves. He kicked the stone hard and it flew a few feet across the sand.
He kicked it harder, and harder, sending the rock flying through the air.
It went up, and up, and up. When it came back down, it flew right into the
beehive, knocking it down to the ground. It burst open, sending the bees
frantically flying into the hot suffocating air. For a few minutes they
flew around confused, not knowing what to do. Suddenly they gathered into
a swarm and came after Dabir the donkey. Where could he go? "HEE HAW!" He
kicked up his back legs and started to run around the pyramid. When he
turned back to have a look, he saw that the bees were still following him.
Finally, after running around the pyramid ten times, the bees gave up and
flew off to build another beehive.
Dabir was tired. He stopped and
rested in the shade of a date palm. He looked around and spotted a herd of
camels. They were lying in the sun, enjoying themselves, doing nothing.
Dabir walked over to them. The camels ignored him. He wanted to play with
them so he started trotting through the sand, going around and around the
herd. All he managed to do was kick up sand, which flew into the camels
eyes. They began to be annoyed with him. One camel tried to bite him,
another spit at him, but he wouldn't go away. Finally, the dust was so
annoying to the camels that they got up and started chasing him. Dabir
thought they were playing with him, so he brayed loudly, "HEE HAW!" He
kicked up his back legs and ran towards the step pyramid. The camels
followed, chasing him away. After only a few minutes, the camels stopped
and went back to lying in the sun, but Dabir kept running towards the step
pyramid. He ran around it, and around, and around. After running around it
about seven times, he noticed the camels were not chasing him anymore.
He was tired so he walked slowly
over to the date palm and sat down in the shade to rest. He looked towards
the river and noticed a group of crocodiles lying in the mud on the
riverbank. He walked over to them. There were five very large crocodiles
and they were all sleeping. Dabir wanted to play with them, but they
wouldn't wake up, so he began to bray. "HEE HAW! HEE HAW! HEE HAW!" Two of
the crocodiles open their eyes to see what was going on, but shut them
again. Dabir wanted to play with them so he kicked his back legs up in the
air and went, "HEE HAW! HEE HAW!"
The largest crocodile was fed up
with this. He wanted to sleep, not to be annoyed by a pesky donkey, so as
Dabir stood braying and kicking, he moved closer. Suddenly he opened his
jaw wide and snapped it shut right near Dabir's legs. Dabir stopped making
noise when he realized the crocodile was trying to eat him. He was
terrified. He turned and ran back towards the step pyramid. The crocodile
chased him a little bit longer. Dabir ran around, and around, and around
the pyramid five times before he realized the crocodile had gone back to
the river to sleep.
Dabir was very tired now. He went
over to the side of the pyramid where his master had left the water for
him to drink. He was lapping it up when the master came back. He put
Dabir's blanket on his back and then started piling goods onto it. Dabir
stood still and waited until he was loaded up. The master grabbed the rope
and tied it around Dabir's neck. He pulled at it to get the donkey moving.
Dabir was too tired to walk all the
way back to the oasis. The master pulled again. Dabir wouldn't budge. The
master pulled harder. Dabir stood firm, tugging against the rope. He broke
loose and started to run. The master followed him, calling his name
angrily. Dabir ran around the pyramid. All the goods fell off his back. He
ran around, and around, and around the step pyramid with the master
chasing him, screaming at him in a rage.
The bees stopped mending their
beehive and watched. They began to laugh and buzz loudly. The camels that
were lying in the sun looked up and watched. They laughed when they saw
Dabir and his master. The crocodiles by the river laughed when they saw
what was happening. That night as the sun set, the step pyramid was
silhouetted in black against the red sky of dusk, as were Dabir the donkey
and his master as they still ran around, and around, and around, the