Chapter 3: Pecking and Tapping
Half a day had passed and the suspicion started arising: “Half the day has gone and he has not come yet. We are unnecessarily being bothered by this old fool’s dream. Who has ever heard that any god comes to any temple? It goes against all factuality, all history, and we believed the dream and tired ourselves unnecessarily. And we cannot eat, unless the guest comes.”
That is a simple rule in the temple. First the god has to be served and then the priests can share the food.
Up to now it had been easy, because the gods were only stone gods. Today was difficult. It was getting late, the sun had started going down and everybody was angry with the old priest: “We have wasted so much money unnecessarily on flowers, on painting.. We had to bring so many servants to clean, because it was almost impossible, it was so huge.”
The old priest said, “I am sorry, but what can I say? He may still come.”
The day passed and finally they decided, even against the head priest, “Now it is useless to wait - the sun has set. The whole day we have been hungry and working and now we are tired. We want to eat and go to sleep.”
The old man said, “It is better just to wait one night more because he is the King of the Night - that we have forgotten completely. He will not come in the day; he will come in the night, if ever he comes.”
They said, “Now we are no longer going to be persuaded by this stupidity to remain hungry and awake the whole night, waiting for your dream.”
The old priest said, “There is no need to revolt. I am myself old and tired and hungry; I will join you.perhaps it was just a dream.”
And they all ate the delicacies they had arranged for the god of the temple. They were so tired they fell asleep very soon, early in the night.
In the middle of the night came a golden chariot with the King of the Night, the god of the temple. The chariot came on the mud road leaving its marks on the mud up to the great gate of the temple. There were a thousand steps to reach to the temple, and the god of the temple climbed those thousand steps up to the main door.
The noise of the chariot on the mud road was heard. Some priest, half-awake, half-asleep said, “It seems he has come, because I hear the sound of a great chariot.”
Somebody else shouted him down: “Don’t disturb us now. Enough of all this nonsense! There is no chariot; it is just a cloud passing by.”
Somebody else said, “But I have heard the steps - somebody is coming up to the main door.”
Out of those thousand priests many jumped upon him and forced him: “Remain silent and quiet. It is nothing but a strong wind striking on the doors. Don’t be deceived; don’t think that the god will knock on the doors.”
In the morning they were all crying because there were marks of footprints on those one thousand steps and on the mud road there were marks of a chariot, coming and going back.