It is a tale of the green or as he would have put it...
"Tis a tale of a donkey and a green Irish donkey at that. A green Irish donkey named Donald"
Now my uncle wasn't Irish but he loved to tell a story using his "blarney voice" as he described it."
I giggled and said that donkeys weren't green.
"Ahh yes, laddy," he smiled. "Maybe we don't have green donkeys over here but, over there in the land of green where all the grass is pure green four-leaf clovers, it's not uncommon to have a green donkey now and them. And a prized and valuable animal they are.
It is so valuable that if someone is lucky enough to have a green donkey born into their stable, they immediately hide it by painting it gray."
"But, wouldn't that make it a gray donkey," I asked?
"Only to those that didn't know it was it was really green.."
"But, what good is a green donkey if it is painted gray"
"The leprechauns know", he winked. "And when the leprechauns know there is a green donkey in the stable, they help with the work. At night, while owner of the donkey is asleep, they milk the cows and take care of the fields. Then the owner of the donkey becomes rich. It is better than finding a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow.
Now a young Irish farmer by the name of Padrigal went out to feed his donkey and discovered that during the night she had berthed him a green foal. Padrigal was so excited that he immediately went to town and bought a pail of gray paint.
Now the owner of the store said, 'Why would you be wanting a pail of gray paint?'
Padrigal hadn't thought that the gray paint might just be like announcing his new luck to the newspaper.
'Just never you mind why I need gray paint and I'll mind you to keep your big mouth shut,' Padrigal warned him.
'What are you going to name your new gray donkey?' the shop keeper asked him with a smile.
Without thinking, Padrigal said, 'Donald, after my great grandfather, Donald O'Shey'.
Now, on the way home, Padrigal realized that come the evening meal everyone in the village would know that he had been given the gift of a green donkey. So, instead of going home he went to the donkey peddler in the next county and bought a baby donkey and then went on back to his farm."
I had to ask why would Padrigal want another baby donkey.
Uncle Leo sipped his coffee, lit his pipe and said, "Well laddy, it was like this. Padrigal knew that people would be hounding him to sell that little old green donkey and he wasn't about to sell a donkey he had named after his great grandfather and one that would make him rich.
So, he took the gray donkey that he bought and painted it gray and then let it out to graze in the clover pasture and hid Donald the green donkey in his bedroom.
Sure enough, people from all over the county were standing by his rock fence looking at that fresh painted baby gray donkey.
'Hey Padrigal, how much do you want for that gray donkey?' one of them yelled.
'Not for sale,' Padrigal said.
Then one man offered him 100 pounds and another 150 pounds and then 200 pounds. At first Padrigal really wasn't going to sell the gray donkey but when the richest, stingiest man in the county offered him 5000 pounds, he thought, 'why not?'.
'Now why would you be wanting to buy this little old gray donkey for that much money?' he asked the man.
'None of your business,' was the reply.
'Well now,' Padrigal said. 'I might just part with this gray donkey for 10,000 pounds.'
Almost before Padrigal finished talking the rich man said, 'It's a deal.'
The next day Padrigal went to town and bought a pail of green paint.
Now the owner of the store said, 'Why would you be wanting a pail of green paint?'
'Just never you mind why I need green paint and I'll mind you to keep your big mouth shut,' Padrigal warned him.
When he got home, Padrigal let his green donkey, Donald, go into the field of clover and graze to his hearts content.
And when the towns people passed by they would say, 'That Padrigal is so stupid. He's trying to fool the leprechauns into thinking he still has that green donkey.'"
gsbatty/July 20013.........................written for "Two Shoes Tuesday"