“whln-rcis-cbk-vyf-raygs-Zoa-FK-jEok-Sod,” Hq jcoJk. “Chk-rkd-roa-Dks-jVuJla-jSix-jjSb-wpJ-Sox, qcd-jRok-lkf-vmg-ek-xkf-wiv-tof-wyJa-qU-HV-vhka-qU-eUs-Hfh.”
“jjSb-qcd-jRok-Shls-wyJa-qU-aiJa-Grh-Hfh” ela-Slv.”xp-jfid-ahln-rtkn-Woa-dI-tis-tm-Chk-qcd-jRok-BUb jjtK qcd-jwok-vmg-jWpn-xp-VyJx-lbka-xk-dbla.
“I hope it stops raining soon,” said Pai. “If the road gets too muddy, we can’t drive up the mountain to Ban Pu Sung.”
“We must get up that mountain!” answered Sone. “The kids are waiting for us. And they’ve never had books before!”
jxugl-qcd-jRok-Rlf-vhka-Spa-qU-Zoa-dmg-qm-fp-jluJla.“wyJa-HV-Skx-Dks-jVuJla-apJ-Foa-eYf-Fygs-FK-jjxba-vhka-qU-eUs!” LE-jzp-tof-jcoJk. “vmg-RUh-cbk-whln-FK-ek-xkf-wiv-tof-wyJa-qU-aiJa-Hfh-rtu-vmg.”
“jFoJk-Shls-qK-nk-nkx-wyJa-Grh-Hfh,” ela-jcoJk-jjvv-vis-Wiv. “xp-jfid-ahln-rtkn-dcbk-Rhln-Woa-Dpg-dI-tis-tm-Chk-qcd-jRok-BUb.” LE-jzp-tof-SPf-Fid-jjthc-jtpgx-vua-wyJa. Sla-DI-lPf tof-wyJa-Hfh-Hc-eox-Wca. rtis-Fkd-aiJa dmg-jtpgx-Ehk-tos, Ehk-tos, vmg-foa-xia-dmg-BYf.
The rain stopped just as they reached Ban Tin Pu. “Ban Pu Sung is at the top of the dirt road,” said the driver. “But I don’t think I can drive up that mountain.”
“You’ve got to try,” insisted Sone. “More than a hundred kids are waiting for us.The driver turned the truck and started up. The truck went fast at first, then slower, and slower. Soon, it stopped.
whln-wiv-wyJa-vmg-Hfh,” LE-jzp-tof-jcoJk. “jvPgs-fU, roa-Dks-Smg-rahk-Eia-wyJa, Eia-wyJa-jtuJlnA. tm-Chk-Foa-Rlf-tK-fU-jjths, jjthc-Wbln-xk-lpd-Sugx” tkc-WblnA-Cln-tof-Bbks-tK-xif-tK-cis-div-Wua-HV-vhka-Spa-qU.
“I can’t do it,” said the driver. “Look, the road gets even steeper up ahead. Let’s wait until dry season, then try again.” Carefully, he drove the truck backwards, back down the hill to Ban Tin Pu.
qcd-DPx-ska-Vyd-ek-dia-cbk “qcd-jRok-FK-tm-Chk-Foa-Rlf-tK-fU-jjths-vmg-Hfh” nY-qPa-jcoJk. “fNc-apJ-jfid-ahln-dI-tis-tm-Chk-qcd-jRok-BUb!”
qm-fp-Wcka-Ehks-Woa-raygs-jwoJk-xk. “qcd-jFoJk-Fug-whln-Hfh-vm? whln-jria-qcd-jFoJk-dI-tis-xp-via-rk-BUb. Ehks-wls-whln-jjdb-jdpa-HV-Dpg-FK-jRif-cNd-raid jjtK Ga-Ebcs-apJ dmg-vmg-xp-cNd-rtkn-Vka-Gf. aks-GEh-jc-tk-ebca-rtkn-BUb-vhka-div-tUd-ahln-wls-aks. Chk-rkd-cbk-qcd-jFoJk-ek-xkf-nbks-wyJa-Dks-apJ-Hfh, vks-Dp aks-lkf-ek-xkf-Sbks-VyJx-HV-Grh-qcd-jFoJk-Hfh.”
The staff talked together. “We can’t wait until dry season,” Yuphin insisted. “The children are waiting now!”
A mahout came over. “Do you remember me? I saw your problem. My elephant is too old to work hard, and there’s not much work for elephants these days anyway. Most of the time, she stays home with her baby. But if you can all walk up the trail, maybe she can carry the books.”
qcd-jwok-jlok-VyJx-wyJa-Geb-rtis-Ehks jjthc-dmg-jtpgx-nbks-wyJa-HV. xia-jVia-cNd-Dpg-nkd-rtkn, DYdA-Woa-qK-tkf-toJx-jVia-vks-WiJs-Wkc, jjxba-jjSb-Ehks-dmg-jEiga-dia jjSb-qcd-jwok-dmg-nis-euv-Smg-jfpa-Dks-HV-jtuJlnA.
rtis-Fkd-aiJa qcd-jwok-dmg-xk-Rlf-vbla-Dpg-Eia. Hq jjtK-ela-tls-wyJa-dbla, jjSb-vmg-ek-xkf-wyJa-Hfh-jqkK-xia-xuga-jdpa-HV.
“Grh-Ehks-wyJa-dbla, jjthc-FPgs-nbks-Skx-Rln-Spa-wls-aks,” Wcka-Ehks-jcoJk. jjxba-jjSb-Ehks-dmg-qK-tkf-toJx-Wu-dia. nhla-dhkx-jauJl-wls-aks-jjdb-rtkn-jjthc. aks-qK-nk-nkx-Grh-fp-Dpg-eYf jjSb-dmg-vmg-ek-xkf-wyJa-qU-aiJa-Hfh. Ga-Dpg-eYf, Wcka-Ehks-FPgs-jcoJk-cbk, “whln-jen-GF, Dpg-aks-vmg-ek-xkf-wyJa-Hfh.” qcd-jwok-Fygs-qk-dia-div-Wua-tos-xk-tYbx-lpd fhcn-Wckx-jen-GF.
They put the books on the elephant’s back and started up. It was hard work. Everybody slipped sometimes. Even the elephant slipped. But they kept going.
Then they got to the steep part. Pai and Sone tried to go first. But it was too slippery.
“Let the elephant go first, then walk in her footsteps,” said the mahout. But the elephant slipped too. Her muscles were old. She tried her best but she couldn’t climb up that mountain. Finally, the mahout said, “I’m sorry, she can’t make it.” Sadly, they all turned and went back down.
tUd-ahln-wls-Ehks-Dpg-Fiv-Sk-jvPgs-jrf-dka-BUb-aiJa. “tls-Grh-whln-wyJa-jvPgs,” aks-jcoJk-wyJa.
“jFoJk-nis-ahln-Lqf,” Wcka-Ehks-jcoJk-Geb. “jFoJk-vmg-jWpn-wyJa-Dks-jjvv-apJ-Fid-jDugl.”
“whln-FK-tls-jvPgs,” Ehks-ahln-jcoJk. “jqkK-cNd-apJ-xia-eI-Wia. DYd-cia-apJ, whln-jria-jfid-ahln-xp-Wckx-eK-raYd-eK-raka-div-VyJx-Dpg-qcd-jFoJk-Hfh-jlok-xk-Grh-jjSb-tK-vhka. dK-tY-ak-Grh-whln-tls-wyJa-jvPgs-Fid-WiJs.”
Fkd-aiJa jjxb-wls-Ehks-ahln-dmg-jcoJk-wyJa-cbk, “Grh-aks-tls-jvPgs. aks-Grnb jjtK-jjws-jjRs-wyJa-DYdA-cia. whln-WPf-cbk-aks-lkf-ek-xkf-wyJa-Hfh.”
Ga-Dpg-eYf Wcka-Ehks-dmg-Sod-tos, jjthc-qcd-jwok-dmg-jlok-VyJx-Geb-rtis-Ehks-ahln.
The baby elephant had been watching. “Let me try,” she said.
“You’re too young,” said the mahout. “You’ve never done anything like this.”
“I can try,” said Little Elephant. “This is important. Every day, I see the children enjoying the books you brought to this village. Please, let me try.”
The mahout shook his head.
Then the mother elephant spoke up. “Let her try. She’s bigger and stronger every day. I think she can do it.”
At last the mahout agreed, and they put the books on Little Elephant’s back.
jjdif-VyJx-jvPgs-Wu-ahln. jjSb-Ehks-ahln-jjVd-GF-jVia-rnis-xia-FPgs-raid-jjDh! jjSb-aks-xp-Wckx-xYbs-rxiJa-Dpg-FK-Sbks-jjdif-VyJx-aiJa-wyJa-qU-Grh-Hfh.
qcd-jwok-qk-dia-jtpgx-nbks-wyJa-qU. roa-Dks-nis-Wos-xuga, jjSb-qcd-jwok-dmg-ek-xkf-xk-Rlf-vbla-Dpg-Eia.
Ehks-ahln-Eld-rk-FYf-Dpg-fp jqugl-cks-Spa-wls-aks-tos. aks-nbks-HV-lpd-vkf-dhkc-raygs, jjthc-dmg-HV-lpd-vkf-dhkc-raygs, Rlf-vkf-dhkc-Dpg-ekx. “Wife, Wife” Spa-Ehks-ahln-qK-tkf-HV-wK-aK-Dpg-aks-fys-Spa-jjSb-tK-jvuJls-lld-Fkd-wpJ-Sox.
Fkd-aiJa, aks-dmg-qK-tkf-toJx. aks-qK-nk-nkx-wyJa-lpd. aks-qK-nk-nkx-Vpa-wyJa-jVia-WiJs-Dpg-ekx jjSb-jjthc-dmg-qK-tkf-toJx-lpd. eYf-Dhkn Wcka-Ehks-dmg-vld-qcd-jwok-cbk Wca-FK-nod-jtpd-ek. DYdA-Woa-Sbks-nbks-div-Wua-tos-qU-xk-fhcn-Wckx-jen-GF.
The boxes looked small. Little Elephant was surprised that they were so heavy! But she was determined to carry them up the mountain.
Together, they all started up. The road was still slippery, but they all reached the steep section.
Little Elephant looked for a good spot to put her foot. She took a step. Then she took another step, and a third step. “Klush, Klush,” went Little Elephant’s feet as she pulled each one from the mud.
But then, she slipped. She tried again, and slipped again. She tried a third time, and again she slipped. Finally the mahout said they would have to give up. Sadly, everyone walked back down.
jxugl-div-Wua-xk-Rlf-vhka-Spa-qU-rtkn-Woa-GQA-dmg-xp-rahk-Sk-Dpg-jeoJk-rxls. jjSb-Ehks-ahln-vmg-nlx-DmJ-Cln. “apJ-jVia-cNd-Dpg-eI-Wia,” aks-jcoJk. “nis-xp-roa-Dks-lpd-jeiJa-raygs. xia-jVia-Dks-jdogk, xia-jjWv-eI-tiv-tof-via-DYd jjtK-jjWv-eI-tiv-jjxb-wls-whln-FK-HV-Hfh. jjSb-vks-Dp-qcd-jRok-ek-xkf-HV-Hfh.”
Ehks-ahln-qk-qcd-jwok-HV-rk-Dks-jeiJa-aiJa jjthc-dmg-jtpgx-nbks-wyJa-HV. qcd-jwok-nbks-wyJa-wla-Hxh-Skn, nbks-tlf-sbk-Hxh-SX jjtK nbks-jwoJk-Rblx-Qk-HV.
jjSb-jeiJa-Dks-apJ-EO-qif-Eia jjtK xuga-dcbk-jdogk. Hq jjtK ela-Fbls-jWul-jwok-wyJa-dbla, jjSb-jxugl-Ehks-ahln-qK-nk-nkx-Fbls-jWul-jwok-aiJa-wyJa xia-EO-qif-wkf. jxugl-jVia-jjac-aiJa, qcd-jwok-FI-Shls-Hfh-nbks-div-Wua-Wu-jdogk.
There were many unhappy faces when they arrived back at Ban Tin Pu. But Little Elephant wouldn’t give up. “This is important,” she said. “There’s another trail. It’s an old trail, too narrow for trucks. It’s even too narrow for my mother. But maybe we can make it.”
Little Elephant led them to the trail, and they started up. They went over dead trees, under low branches, and between narrow rocks.
But this trail, too, grew steeper and more slippery. Pai and Sone used vines to pull themselves up, but the vines broke when Little Elephant tried to use them. Finally, they had to go back down.
jxugl-qcd-jwok-Wua-xk-Rlf-vhka-Spa-qU-jDugl-apJ, DYdA-Woa-dmg-nPgs-jeoJk-GF. jjSb-Ehks-ahln-vmg-nlx-jjqh. “cNd-apJ-eI-Wia-rtkn whln-FK-vmg-nlx-jjqh-sbknA,” aks-jcoJk. aks-WPf-BUb-VK-xka-els-ekx-ak-Dp, Fkd-aiJa aks-Fygs-WPf-Hfh-cP-Dp-raygs-lld-xk:
“Dks-vbla-Dpg-Eia-xia-vmg-Hfh-nkc-rtkn,” els-Woa-qcd-jFoJk-ek-xkf-Fbls-jWul-jwok-wyJa-HV-dbla. jjthc-xif-jEuld-Geb-SoJa-Hxh-Dks-jDPs. jjthc-whln-FK-Fbls-jEuld-Skx-wyJa-HV. rtis-Fkd-aiJa-DYdA-Woa-Dpg-jrtul Fygs-nbks-wyJa-Skx-rtis-whln.”
qcd-jwok-Dof-tls-wyJa-qU-lpd-WiJs-raygs, jxugl-Rlf-vbla-Dpg-Eia. Hq jjtK ela Fbls-jWul-jwok-wyJa jjthc-xif-jEuld-eoJa-raygs-Geb-SoJa-Hxh. rtis-Fkd-aiJa Ehks-ahln jjtK DYdA-Woa-Dpg-jrtul-Fygs-ek-xkf-nbks-wyJa-qU-vbla-Dpg-Eia-aiJa-Hfh.
Now, everyone was even sadder when they arrived back at Ban Tin Pu. But Little Elephant wouldn’t quit. “This is too important to give up,” she said. She thought for a few minutes, then she had an idea:
“The steep section is very short. Two of you can go up using the vines. Tie a rope to the tree above. Then I’ll pull myself up on the rope, and everybody else can follow.”
One more time, they all started up the mountain. Pai and Sone pulled themselves up the steep part and tied a rope to the tree. Then Little Elephant and everyone else was able to climb up.
jxugl-qoJa-vbla-Eia-aiJa-jjthc roa-Dks-dmg-eK-fcd-wyJa. qcd-jwok-Hfh-BYf-qid-Dpg-aO-Sod-Skf-jjrbs-raygs jqugl-thks-Soa-thks-Soc jjthc-nbks-Smg-lpd-vmg-foa-dmg-Rlf-vhka-qU-eUs. “eckf, eckf” eNs-Spa-wls-Ehks-ahln-nbks-LDb-aO-HV.
The trail became easier. They stopped at a waterfall to wash off, and soon they arrived at Ban Pu Sung. “Slosh, slosh” went Little Elephant’s feet as she walked through the water.