How Monkey Stole the Drum

In the beginning of time, before there was humankind, all the animals used to come together to dance. Now, they had no instruments, so they made music by raising their voices high. (hoots, howls & growls) Up into the sky, until at last, with the rising sun, the animals would disappear — one by one, by one, by one, by one — until only Ajanaku, the great Leopard King, was left.

One day, Ajanaku, he had killed a fine, fat bush buck and was eating out its flesh. He threw the skin away, and under the hot, African sun, that skin landed on a stump and dried, tight — tight — as a drum. And when Ajanaku, he went to wipe his whiskers off, why ...."Boom! Oooooh!... Boom-boom! Oooooh!...!Boomp,be be boomp, be be boomp boom boom. Boomp,be be boomp, be be boomp boom boom, . Boomp,be be boomp, be be boomp...AAAAAh! He began to dance and play. And far away, all the other animals heard the noise and they came running to see, and when they saw Ajanaku's drum, they wanted one!

So they went into the bush and from their behind took a piece of skin (owhoo hooo hooo hoo) and then they stretched that skin tight across a hoop of wood and made a drum which they could play (grunts and groans, etc.)

Now, far away, Monkey, he heard the noise. And he came running to see. And when he saw their drums, he wanted one. But, when he went into the bush to take a piece of skin, he thought, "I'm such a little thing. If I take anything off of me, there won't be anything left. I better steal a drum, instead."

And, so Monkey waited for all the animals to go bed; then into the camp he did creep — to where Ajanaku, the Leopard King, lay asleep. And Monkey stole the drum away.

Next day, when Ajanaku awoke "(yawning growl)Who stole my drum?! Who STOLE my drum?!! (growl!) The Monkey! The Monkey! I see his tracks!"

And, so Ajanaku, he went to the monkey tree and there he cleared the brush so he could see North and South and East and West — and waited for Monkey to come.

Down the road came Monkey, singing and playing the drum, "La la la, I stole Ajanaku's drum. I stole Ajanaku's drum..."

(Big growl!) And out of the brush Ajanaku leapt, grabbing Monkey by the neck (choking sounds). "Oh, Lord and Master, are you going to eat me now?" (growl) "Don't eat me. I'm such a skinny thing. I'll tell you what. If you throw me in the air, I'll grow fatter. Hmmm? What's the matter? The worst that can happen is that I'll come back down and — phttt — splatter.

And, so Ajanaku, he took Monkey by the tail and "One, two, threeeee..." High in the air he threw Monkey and Monkey, he took a deep breath, "(inhaling), see, I'm fatter. Try it again."

And, so Ajanaku, he took Monkey again and "One, two, threeeeeee..." High in the air he threw Monkey and Monkey took a deeper breath "(inhaling) Ahh, I'm fatter still. Nice fat gut. Nice fat butt. Throw me up again you crazy nut."

And, Ajanaku, he took Monkey with all his strength and "One, two, threeeeeee..." High, high, high, high, high that Monkey reached up and grabbed hold of a tree.

"Hee hee hee, Ajanaku, Ajanaku, I've made a monkey, the monkey of you. (monkey laughter)"

And then Monkey went swinging away, leaving Ajanaku hungry that day.

So, if ever you go to the zoo, visit the monkeys. They'll look like they're laughing at you. Do not angry. Don't make a big stew. It's only those chimps still chattering, "chi chi chi chi chi chi chi..." about the day they tricked Ajanaku and got away.

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