“And then the princess told him, ‘I have vowed never to marry or have anything to do with any man, but it looks like Heaven arranged this by destiny. And now that I have seen you there, I realized that I cannot go against Heaven’s will.’”
(Hallo, Master.) Yes, yes, yes. We are back to business. So…
“This person, Chử Đồng Tử, his father is Chử Cù Vân. Because they are so poor, so poor that both of them have to take turns to have a rag to wrap around their private area, if they have to go out of their vicinity, of their house or something. (Wow.) One day, his father died because he’d been sick, very sick. And before he died, his father said to him, ‘After I die, you should not use the rag to cover me, to bury me with. You must keep it so that you can continue to survive outside. When you want to go out, you wrap yourself. So don’t give it to me.’ (Right.) But after his father Cù Vân died, Chử Đồng Tử had no heart to bury him naked like that. So, even though there’s only one rag left for him to cover himself to go out for decency, he still used it to wrap around his father before he buried him.”
Such a very filial son. (Yes, Master.) (Very respectful.) Who would be so loving and kind, and respectful and filial like that? (Yes.) Most people would think about themselves first and would think, “OK, he died already. What for would he need it? I need it more.” (Yes.) It’s normal thinking like that. But he must be a very good person somehow (Yes.) as well.
I’m not... I wasn’t prepared. I just did it quickly so I didn’t prepare. It’s getting cold now.
“He buried his father and continued to live. He had a little thatched hut on the bank of a river. Every day, according to the story, he went and caught some fish-people. And then with that, he could exchange them for other necessities, like rice and stuff like that, with those boat people that passed by.”
“At that period of time in history, there was a princess. Her name was Tiên Dung.” Tiên Dung is an Aulacese (Vietnamese) name. It means ‘fairy-like,’ meaning she’s beautiful, like a fairy. (Yes.) “And she was exceptionally beautiful. She was already 17, 18 but she never wanted to marry any man. (Right.) She only liked to go on the boat, traveling here and there with the boat, to see beautiful scenery and locations. The king loved her very much and accepted her request. So, he prepared a very beautiful boat, a big one, big boat, with a lot of servants. So, wherever she wanted to go, they would take her there. The king never forbade it.”
“One day Princess Tiên Dung was on the boat, enjoying the scenery and the freedom on the river with her servants. So, her boat went in the middle. And in the front, there were guards, bodyguards, and soldiers. And on the back also. Like that. Her servants and her soldiers, her bodyguards were in the front and in the back of her boat. Her boat was in the middle. They are protecting her, (Right. Yes.) and ready to serve her, of course.” Princess. Daughter of the king.
Not like me. I don’t even have one. Stay in a little room. Not really a room. It’s a shabby kind of ready-made stuff, two by four. In front of me there are trees, behind me there are trees. Same with the left and the right. No one else. No bodyguard, no soldiers, nothing. (Tree guards.) They are also guarding me in a way. (Yes.) They’re big and powerful, strong, muscular trees.
“So, when they arrived at a part of the river in the village Chử Xá, people saw their boats. It looked like they covered the whole river, the whole river part of that area.” Probably many boats. (Right.) Because she has one boat, but different, and the other boats belong to her retinue. The servants and all that, men and woman and soldiers.
“Chử Đồng Tử saw it. He was kind of trying to catch the fish-people,” with the small kind of self-made basket? (Yes.) They put it in the water and then the fish-people come in but they cannot go out, those small things, like that. “But when he saw so many boats and so many soldiers and all kinds of very impressive crowds like that, royalty, (Yes.) so he was so scared. He threw away his basket that he used to catch the fish-people.”
Anybody knows that kind of basket that they put in the water and then the fish come in? It’s just a small catch, you know? It’s not like a net or anything. Anyway, it’s a kind of basket. You can see through, but there is only one way because the mouth is big and it gets smaller inside, so the fish-people can go in easily but can’t come out, they’re trapped. Cannot get out. It gets smaller and smaller inside, so the fish-people can easily maneuver to come in, but when they come out, they cannot. So that’s how they catch the fish-people. Not a lot. But that’s all he could have.
“But even then he saw so many soldiers and people and such a royal, impressive crowd like that on the river. So he threw his fishing device trap and then ran away. But he could not go very far because over there it’s like a sandy riverbank and there’s nowhere else he could run fast enough, so he went onto the riverbank. But he kind of dug a hole in the sand and then he buried himself in there. Using sand to cover as much as he could.”
“The princess saw that it is a very beautiful riverbank, and then here and there there were some big trees that had good shade, very, very comfortable, and very cool. So, the princess loved it, so she ordered all the boats, her boat, to anchor on the riverbank, and then she selected a place which had nice shade from the big tree and asked her servants to kind of make a tent, using a cloth to make a circle to cover one small area so that she could go inside to take a bath in private.”
“She went inside, took off all her clothes and then she stayed there, splashing around, swimming a little bit. But she didn’t know that wherever she was at that time, with even all the clothes hanging around her, was exactly where Chử Đồng Tử was covering himself with the sand. (Ah, yeah!) The way she was splashing around and digging the sand, after a while, all the sand ran away, (See him.) revealing that man. (Oh!) So, she saw him. With all his splendor in the birthday suit. The princess was so startled and shocked. (Yeah.) And asked him what is he doing there all naked like that? So Chử Đồng Tử told her that he didn’t have any clothes. And then he saw her retinue and boats and soldiers like that, so he was so scared so he had to bury himself in the sand to cover himself, to hide.” (Oh. Yes.)
“And then the princess told him, ‘I have vowed never to marry or have anything to do with any man, but it looks like Heaven arranged this by destiny. And now that I have seen you there, I realized that I cannot go against Heaven’s will.’ (Yes, Master.) So, then she asked him to bathe himself, gave him all the necessities.” Soap and all that, I guess. Shampoo.
“And then she asked a servant to bring him clothes. And they brought him to her boat and then she asked her servant to prepare the wedding feast and ceremony. (Oh. Wow.) But Chử Đồng Tử expressed his refusal, (Oh.) because he didn’t feel like he was worthy to be the husband of the princess. (Oh, right.) He’s so poor. (Yes, Master.) He has not even a rag to cover himself. How would he dare to think even in his dreams like that? Even though she had expressed her willingness. (Yeah.) But he refused.”