Blood is thicker than water

Many of the Ron stories I have recorded have a moral. The following story in the Daffo variety of Ron gives an example for the saying “Blood is thicker than water“, i.e. the bonds of family and common ancestry are stronger than the bonds between unrelated people. The story was told by Mr. Mafulul Lek in 1990.

Mwatat ti wu nyat ha?

Wa’ mwatat ti wu nyat. Findel a nii, andai ti kwa. A nii, naaf ma we ɗiin ndee a rumwyat fiyang, ta kir mwatat hai ti ramam. Ɗes, ndee a mun ti nisis ɗiin ma lel. Mma si mun a cwai ɗaam ma mwatat mmis si mwyasi, si hwyaahis ti nisis ma lel sai kyasasi fat cira.

Ren sani jihi a lulet nafu nzis a niyet: “Mwatat ti wu nyat ha?” Ti niyis: “Haa wan a suni tite?” A niyet, ti ji wanjang, ti vo, ti nafor, ti ja, ti faris, ta wom a yish fat shir. Ti masisai andai. A niyet, ti yu, ti niyis mwyasi, yis ma naforat ti a sam ti mwatan ti fwash ɗiin. Ma fuk, si yes, ta findelis. Ti yu, ti lakis andai.

Shak si yes, si haarai fo ta mandohi. Ɗiin a lang ti a sam mma ma nya ti, si mashit, si findel kwa. Si nii, a walis a naforat; naaf ma mamot mai, a tik a lal sis ti mi, maɗigir mai. Si mun a wis, si vo tinan, si njyaat lulya la.

Taa takfai shak a niyet, ti yu, ti lakis nisis ma lel sai ɗes. Ti yu, ti lakis. A taɗas hwash. A yes ti tutok. A ti’ai mando ɗiin kwa. A lang ti a sam mma ma nya ti, a shwai hai, a tos shaat, a nii: “A ɓwe, akwai shi tek inii ma fwash sani mai, sani maɗafal ma sare mai, mma a cu, a sho nin ti hai ti ramam – a kwitis ɗeng kwa.”

Jihi a lifit la, a kai a wasis yir la, a niyis: “Amwash ti, i sun, mwatat ti wu nyat kwa. I mba ha nisin si mwyan ti kek, ɓa i sun, wamai a wu fuk sen taa tu nzu. I mot ti kwa; ɗes ɗama ma yen a man kwa. A yafen mafwash mma ndee i masahai nin si mwyas mmin kyani!”

Si sisal, si ji ligit, si lef ɗaam ka ngga’i, si cu, si sho, sin ka ref, ka fe mmis – si tuf gor la, findel a wal.

  • Mwatat ti wu nyat ha?
  • Fat ndee ha mai, a mun yo ji sai ma ndee, hu wal set tite hun si mwyas mma kyani?
  • Ɗam mma mwyas ma ji kyani si masisai ɗam ma taɗi mai ahun wet?
  • Findel sani a ɗaak fat ɗiin mma a sun ha? A lak ti!
  • Mwatat si ji ti wu ahun si naaf ma lel?
  • Aa yo ji mai ahun naaf ma lel?
  • Mma kunggo mai, shi kunggo ji ahun naaf ma lel?

Blood is thicker than water

Some people think that friendship is better than blood-relation. The following story shows that this is not true.

There was a wealthy man who had friends all over the country. He also had a brother who was very poor. When they celebrated their parties, they used to throw the bones to the poor brother, as if he were a dog.

One day, the rich man asked his wife: “Is friendship better than blood-relation?” She answered: “How are you going to know?” He asked her to cook red sorrel, let it rot, pound it and give it to him to rub all over his body, like a medicine. She did as he said. Then he told her to go and tell his friends that he was rotting away in the house with a terrible disease. That he wants them to come, so that he can talk to them. She went and delivered his message.

All of them came, but quickly returned because of the terrible smell. None of them entered the room where he was so that they could see each other and talk. They said that he was already rotten, a dead man, why was he calling them, that he must be a witch. As they went, they closed their noses and spat out.

After that he asked her to go and tell his poor brother the same story. She went and told him. He broke into tears and came quickly. He didn’t take note of the smell. He entered the room where he was and fell on him and started mourning: “Oh God, you should have taken me, the wretched instead. This was a good man, who gave us food and drink all over the country. He never hated anyone.

The rich man stood up, held him and wiped his tears away and said: “Now I know that friendship is not better than blood-relation. I have tested you, my brother, and these, my friends, to find out who loves me most. I haven’t died, I am not sick at all. Please forgive me all the bad I have done to you, together with my “friends”!”

They were happy, brewed beer and slaughtered many animals. They ate and drank together with their wives and children. They forgave each other. That was the end of the story.

Here are some questions:

  • Is friendship better than blood-relation?
  • If you had been this rich man, how would you have dealt with your friends?
  • Is what the rich man’s friends did to him an unpardonable sin?
  • Is this story similar to one you know? Tell it!
  • Which is better: friendship with a rich man or a poor man?
  • Are you a rich man or a poor man?
  • Would you rather marry a rich man or a poor man?


One response to “Blood is thicker than water

  1. Pingback: Uwe Seibert’s Ron-Kulere Meeting Place | Réseau Méga-Tchad • Mega-Chad Research Network

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