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Why Crocodiles are Afraid of Dayaks - Once upon a time, there was a Dayak who was a very good hunter. One day, as he was returning home carrying two jungle fowls, he was startled to see a large crocodile on the path in front of him. “Where are you going, Mr. Crocodile?” he asked . actually, although he was afraid , he knew that he could climb the steep hill behind him faster than the crocodile could with its short legs.

“I’m looking for some food.” Said the crocodile.

“Well, why don’t you come home with me? I’m sure my wife will cook something for you. In any case, we can eat these two jungle fowls.”

The Dayak though this was the best way to answer the crocodile. He was afraid that if he did not treat the crocodile politely. The crocodile would eat him up.

“Thank you,” replied the crocodile. “You are very kind.: he was curious to see how the Dayak lived as he had never visited one of their house before. He was very friendly and could talk very well.

After eating the meal which Mrs. Dayak had cooked had cooked for him, he said, “I am very comfortable here. Can I stay with you longer?”

“Of course,” the Dayak said. He though that it would make hi appear a very important man to have a crocodile staying at his house.

“Why not allow him to marry our daughter?” his wife asked.
“You must be mad!” her husband cried.

“Well, what’s wrong with that? Have you never heard the old Dayak story about the crocodile who married a girl and afterwards changed into a handsome, rich young man?”

“I don’t believe in fairy stories,” her husband said. “In real life it never happens like that.”

“All right,” his wife answered, “even if he’s not a handsome, rich, young man, he will have to work to support you. That is the Dayak custom.

Finally, the Dayak agreed to the crocodile marrying his daughter.

He soon found out that his son-in law was lazy and good-for-nothing. The crocodile only wanted to lie in the sun the whole day and show his sharp teeth from time to time. He refused to do any work. He would not even catch fish for his father-in-law. He ate so much that his father-in-law’s supply of rice was soon finished. He then forced the Dayak’s neighbors to give him more by opening his terrible-looking mouth and showing his sharp teeth. Very soon, he was hated by all the Dayak’s.

“What should we do?” they asked each other. “If we keep quiet. All the crocodiles will think we’re afraid of them. We must find a way to teach him a good lesson.”

So one day, while he was sleeping, they jumped on him and cut him to pieces.

The news of what had happened quickly reached the king of crocodiles. Surprisingly enough, he agreed with what the Dayaks had done. “customs are important,” he said quietly, “They must always be followed. As he married a Dayak girl, he should have followed the Dayak customs. He deserved what he got.” And so, to this day, a crocodile will not dare to look a Dayak in the face or do any harm to him.

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