11 years ago my English was still very German and a bit stiff. Despite this, I think my re-telling of the ” Frau Holle” story has it’s good bits. I share it un-edited
This tale was first posted in March 2011
There was this young girl. Her father had married again and her stepmother did not like her particularly. She had a step-sister as well – that silly cow. She was not able to recognise a dust-pan from a chopping board. She was all fingers and thumbs and as the girl’s step-mother was a greedy bit** she dumped Joanna the housemaid as soon as she had moved in. You probably expect who is doing the chores now. Definitely not her royal highness and the silly cow. She could not wait when her father came back from his long business journeys because when he was in the house they shared at least a bit of the work. But he was madly in love with the woman so the girl did not dare to say anything. She could not bear to see him unhappy.
One day he came to see her and said:” Darling I am so happy you get on well with my new wife and her daughter. That is why I have decided to go on that trip to the far away kingdom to trade for jewels that I have planned since your mother passed away. I want you to take care of the two as you are more accustomed to the chores!” The girl nearly fainted. She could see the steps evil grin shine on their faces. “How long?” was all she could whisper. “About 6 months!” It sounded like a death sentence.
Her father said his farewells and left and the royal highness came to her room. “Now that your father is gone I want you to go as well. You can stay at the old hut close to the well until he comes back and only come back for two hours per day to clean the house and cook. Now go!”
The girl jumped up and towards the cruel woman but she just said: “What?” with that arrogant slant her voice that felt like a punch in the girl’s stomach. She let her breath go like being punched stood for a second and pushed the woman to the side and ran.
When she reached the well she was entirely breathless. She used to sit with her mother spinning telling stories and singing. When ever she was sad or upset she came here to remember her mother’s wise words: “Darling life is like a wheel it goes up and down. You have to face good days and bad both make out a full filled life!”
“But mother!” she cried “Where are my good days gone?”
And as she said that she felt a strange surge towards the well. Step by step she moved closer until she could see into the pitch black tunnel that led to the waters underneath. And the waters murmured a comforting song:” Come down dance with us!” They seem to say. The girl looked back at the house that has been her home and had changed into hell and she jumped…..
I can not tell you what happened to her. She might be dancing with the waves. She might have found Frau Holle or she might lay dead on the ground. That is up to your imagination.
All I know is that sometimes you have to jump to get out of an unbearable situation