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The badger and the snail

Long, long ago a badger was running along a road in a village. When he came near a rice field, someone called him,"Mr. Badger, where are you going?" He was surprised and stopped there, where he found a small mud snail at his feet. "I'm going to pray for my happy life at a shrine in a town." "That's wonderful! I am also thinking of going there. Mr. Badger, what do you say to having a race with me to the Torii(gate way at the entrance to a shinto shrine)." "Do I have a race with you, a small mud snail? It's nonsense." Saying so, he started running again toward the town, when the snail clung to his tail. The badger ran and ran until he reached the Torii. "You are late." said the snail, holding on to his tail. "Who?" When he turned back, he struck his tail against the pole of the Torii. The snail was thrown away on the road across the Torii and his shell was broken into pieces. The badger was so shocked to find the snail sitting on the road across the Torii. The snail said to him,"I am a faster runner than you. As I ran as hard as possible, I felt very hot. So I took off my clothes. I have been already waiting for you for half an hour." from:Old Japanese stories

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