The Nagat El Eid Camel
By Azah Khamis Saeed Al Hammadi
It was a cold and quiet morning in the desert. Inside the many tents, children started to wake up with their parents. Every morning, the ladies milked the sheep and camels and made cheese, labna, butter and chammi. The men did the farming, growing fruits and vegetables. After the ladies finished the milking, they sat in a circle and taught the children the Holy Quran, Arabic, and played games of matchsticks.
One day, there was a big wedding. Everyone was invited, even the children including three young boys Mohammad, Khalifa and Rashed, who were very naughty. During the wedding, the boys ate constantly for three whole days. They ate so much that they could hardly breathe. They couldn’t even walk because they were so full with food. Their parents were very embarrassed.
The parents of Mohammad, Khalifa and Rashed decided to have a meeting to discuss how they could solve this problem and improve their children’s behaviors. So over lunch, they decided to tell them the story of a huge camel that had a big chin and ate greedy children. The next day before lunch Mohammad, Khalifa and Rashed were sitting with their fathers around the food. One of the fathers asked if the boys knew Nagat Al Eid. The boys looked at each other. The father said, “Yesterday, there were a huge, dark camel.” Another father responded, “Really? What happened? Why did it come?” The third father answered, “This big, ugly camel came for the children who are greedy and misbehave. The camels take them and eat them and crush them without mercy.” When the boys heard that, they started shaking and felt very scared. Khalifa looked at Rashed and Mohammad, then asked his father, “Will the camel come and eat us?” The father answered him, “If you behave badly, yes it will.” From then on, the three boys never ate too much again.