Gifts for the other worldAn elderly couple had a maidservant who used to do their housework, and both of them were so pleased with her. She was extremely devoted to them. All of a sudden, the maidservant got a serious disease and passed away. The couple was so miserable because they had taken her as their own daughter.
One day an old beggar came to their place to beg for alms. The man was not at home, so the elderly lady opened the door. She said, “How are you?”
The beggar said, “I am fine. I just came back from the other world.”
The lady said to herself, “What is the other world?” Since the beggar looked so thin and weak, the elderly lady thought that he had been about to die and then he had recovered. Perhaps his case had been very serious. Although he had not died, he was so weak. She thought that the other world meant Heaven. She said to him, “You are coming back from the other world?”
The beggar said, “Yes.”
The lady said, “Have you any idea about our maidservant? She died all of a sudden and we could not do anything to save her.”
The beggar said, “Died? Your maidservant? As a matter of fact, I married her! We were married in Heaven.”
The lady asked, “You were married in Heaven?”
The beggar said, “Yes, I married her.”
The lady said, “Oh! Here I have many things for her, her garments and so many valuable items. Will you be able to take them to her?”
The beggar said, “Certainly! I am married to her after all. I just came here to visit. I am going back again to the other world.”
The elderly lady gave the beggar all the personal belongings of the maidservant and all the expensive things she and her husband had given the girl over the years because she was such a good worker. The man started carrying everything away. On the way he met with the husband, who was riding home on his horse. The husband got off his horse and said, “What are you doing? Why are you taking these things?”
The beggar said, “Your wife has given me the order to take them. I am only listening to your wife.”
While he was talking, the beggar started running away with all the clothes and gifts. The old man jumped on his horse and chased him. He thought that since he was chasing the other fellow on a horse, the fellow would drop everything. But instead of dropping everything, the beggar kept carrying all the items. Finally the beggar found a tree. He left all the things on the ground and climbed up the tree.
The elderly man was so furious. He said to himself, “I will be able to take these things home, but since this fellow is such a rogue, I want to beat him up!” He left the horse at the foot of the tree and started climbing up. He said, “I want to punish him! I am not going to wait for him to come down. I am going to climb up and punish him. Then I will take back all these things. My stupid wife has given them to him, but I shall take them back.”
When he started climbing up, the beggar came down quickly from the other side of the tree.
The beggar said, “I am carrying these things to your maidservant in the other world!” Then he grabbed all the expensive things and put them on the horse. When the elderly man saw that the beggar had put all the valuables on the horse and was about to ride away, he came down from the tree and said, “Wait, wait, wait! I have a special message for you.”
The beggar said, “What is the message?”
The elderly man said, “Those silly gifts are from my wife. But tell our maidservant that this horse is from me. It is my gift. I am giving her my own horse as a gift because she was such a good worker.”