While walking a remote beach in Indonesia, I came across this strange head. It appeared to be a small boy. There was nobody else around as far as the eye could see, only this small boy's head.
I didn't know what to make of it at first. What was he doing? Why was he here? Should I engage? It took me a moment to decide, but I knew I needed to find out more. Not knowing what to expect, I approached the strange head in the beach sand.
"Hello young boy, are you ok?"I asked.
He did not immediately respond. I looked around to see if anyone else was approaching. Nobody. It was just me and the boy's head.
I asked again, this time in a more forceful manner, "Young boy, what are you doing here? Is there more of you than just a head?"
This time he smiled and began to talk!
Then, from his mouth proceeded the strangest tale I had ever heard. He told me that he came from a family mired in deep poverty. His mother and father could not afford to feed him so they left him stranded on a highway. Not knowing what to do he just stuck out his thumb, and began to hitchhike.
"Please stop!", he pleaded.
He told me a family stopped and picked him up. They took him back to their house and told him that they would take care of him. But it turned out they were very, very mean people. The first thing they did when they got him home was tie him to a tree beside another little girl who was already tied there.
It was here the little girl told him how she had been tied to the tree as long as she could remember. Once per day the man would come out and give her a glass of water and one ear of corn on the cob. She was so sad.
The boy told her "Don't worry little girl. I'll save you." So the strong little boy worked on the ropes all day long until finally he was freed. He released the girl and took her by the hand to escape this place.
But they were on a very large farm surrounded by cornfields. There was no road out that they could find! So the boy led the girl through the cornfield seeking an exit.
But no exit could be found! It was like a giant maze with no way out. After awhile they became tired and hungry so the boy told the girl they must go back.
The girl cried, "But I'm afraid what the man will do when we return! He will know we tried to escape."
Just then they heard a noise of someone coming through the cornfields. Alarmed, the boy told the girl, "Let's run!"
But it was too late. They were found by the man and taken back to the house.
The boy pleaded, "Please don't tie us back up to that tree."
To which the man replied with a menacing smile, "Don't worry. I have other plans for you. You're going in to the corn tub!"
And upon their return the man buried the boy in the corn tub he kept at the back of the house.
He buried the little girl too so only their faces were showing.
There were other kids in the corn tub too, but none could escape. The corn was just too heavy for their little muscles.
But the boy was stronger than the other children. After 3 days of struggling he was able to free himself. But he couldn't help the others. It was just too much for the little boy.
He ran back through the cornfields and this time he found an exit. After he was free from the farm he found another family to take care of him. This family were not farmers but fishermen.
They took him back to their fishing village and was very kind to him. But after awhile the boy missed the corn tub. He wanted to go back.
The new father told him to please stay, he was loved here. But, the boy missed the corn tub. So, relenting, the new father asked, "What if I bury you in the sand? I don't have a farm but there's lots of sand where we fish."
The boy thought that sounded great so the man took him to the beach and buried everything except his head. Each day he would feed the boy fish and bring him water. Finally the boy was happy. And there he remained.
Astonished at this strange story, I asked the boy if I could do anything for him. He replied, "Please go to the farm and free that little girl and bring her here. I miss her!"
So, off I went to my next adventure!
Note: No children were harmed in the invention of this fictional story. The children's actual mother and father are very good parents. (It's the Grandpa you have to watch out for!) - j/k