First People :: American Indian Legends : D-H

How big the World is

An Eskimo Legend

Two couples lived together. One day, the two men fell to talking, "The world is big," said the first.

"How big ?" said the second.

"Let's find out ," answered the first.

So they took their sleds and set off in opposite directions. Their wives cried at parting from each other, but each accompanied her husband, running beside his sled.

Year after year they traveled. The wives had babies, and the babies grew up. Then they had children, and so on, until there were two whole tribes traveling across the ice.

The original couples grew old and frail. The men could no longer drive their sleds; the women could no longer keep up the pace beside them. But still they traveled.

At last, each of them saw movement in the far distance. They kept on going, and, finally, they met, back where they had started.

"The world is big," said the first man.

"Even bigger than we thought," answered the second.

And then they died.

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