Once upon a time in Scotland, there lived a woman named Margaret who had a herd of cows. She had a big farm and she would earn by selling the milk from the cows. But Margaret never smiled. She always had a glum face and often got angry.
One day Margaret went into the shed and when she tried to take the cow out, the cow would not budge. Margaret got angry and she started to push the cow outside. She pushed the cow to a tree and after sitting in the shade, she started to milk the cow. After the bucket was filled with milk, she stopped milking the cow. But the cow moved forward and as she did so, she knocked the bucket of milk over. Margaret’s eyes grew red with anger and she started shouting at the cow.
Just then an old lady was passing by outside on the road and she was selling stools. She came into Margaret’s farm and showed her the stool. Margaret, who was already angry, said that she would kick the old lady out if she did not get off from her property soon. The old lady patiently replied that the stools were magic stools. Margaret then grew calm and the old lady gave her one of the stools she had. The old lady said that the stool would help Margaret in milking the cows and just like she said, when Margaret sat down on the stool, the milk from the cow automatically filled the bucket. She was thrilled but she did not smile even now. And when she thanked the lady, asking her what she wanted in return, the old lady said that she did not want anything in return other than the cows to be treated kindly. The old lady then cautioned her that if she were to ill treat the cows, the stool would punish her. With that, the old lady left Margaret’s farm.
Margaret used the stool and was now able to milk her cows effortlessly. The next day, Margaret was once again in the shed struggling to bring the cows outside. As usual, she got irritated and she pushed the cow outside. She pushed the cow to a tree and after sitting in the shade, she started to milk the cow. But this time, she sat on the magic stool and the stool started bouncing up and down with Margaret. She tried to jump off from the stool, but she could not do so as the stool had fixed itself to her. The stool now took Margaret for a ride into the town!
As the stool bounced through all the streets with Margaret on it, the adults and children came out from the various buildings to see what was happening. They saw and they laughed and all of them ran behind her. The stool now took Margaret back to her farm with all the people following behind her. The stool took her to a ditch and made her fall face first into it. She got up shaking left and right and all the people around her were laughing at her. Margaret then went to a bucket of water nearby and when she looked into it, she saw her own reflection. She could not help but feel funny at her own pathetic state. She smiled and eventually she laughed heartily. This was the first time Margaret had laughed and that was when she started to transform into a kinder and gentler person.
Moral – One who respects the rose, must respect the thorn also.