Journey With Story


Journey With Story

The Whales and the Sandpipers: E206


The Whales and the Sandpipers E206

A Whale and a Sandpiper begin to argue and soon all the fish in the sea and all the birds of the air have joined in to make a colossal battle until they come to their senses and decide it is better to make peace.  A lovely tale from the Marshall Islands that reminds us how important it is to make peace.  (duration 10 minutes) Ages 5-10

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The Whale and the Sandpipers 

Episode 206

November 17,2022

Have you ever got into an argument that just kept getting bigger and bigger as more and more people joined in and everyone was shouting and yelling at one another?  How did that make you feel?  How did the argument finally end?  Was everyone happy?  Or was np one happy? 


Hello everyone. I’m Kathleen Pelley.  Welcome to Journey with Story.  Today’s episode is a story from The Marshall Islands – and they are located in the western Pacific Ocean and it is about a very big argument between a group of whales and a group of sandpipers (those are small birds that live by the sea) and this argument keeps getting bigger and bigger and bigger until….well let’s listen and find out. 


Before we begin a big thanks to all of our patreon subscribers- we really appreciate your support.  Remember, you can become a patreon subscriber today and start enjoying our weekly coloring sheets that accompany each episode. 


Now let’s take a journey with – 

The Whales and the Sandpipers 



One day a great  whale, said to a little sandpiper “There are many more whales than sandpipers in the world.” 


“Not at all!” said the sandpiper. “There are many more sandpipers.” 


“More whales!” said the whale. 


“More sandpipers!” said the sandpiper. 


They argued a long time about it. Finally, the whale began to sing and chant, sing and chant: 


“Bottora, bottora u – u Bottora u! Dri batati raj an i juri, Bottora u, bottora u!” 


The chant was, first, some blowing sounds, as he blew water and air high into the sky. Then, the words of the chant called all the whales to come fast, fast through the water. 


All the whales came from the east, pushing up high waves. The great whale sang again. Then, all the whales came from the west. The great whale kept on singing.  


Then, all the whales came from the north and south. At last, all the whales of the ocean were there, splashing and blowing, pushing the waters of the ocean up to the sky. 


“Do you see?” said the great whale. “I told you there were more whales than sandpipers!” 


“Just wait,” said the little sandpiper. He began to chant and sing, chant and sing: 


“Kirir i e, Kirir i e, kola raj i e Ej mon io kolo ne kar jab Bwijirokwa eo ke i baj mij oo-oo-oo!” 


The chant was, first, some cheeping, chirping sounds. Then the words called all the sandpipers in the world: “Come quick! If I didn’t have the eagle to protect me, I would be killed. Come, sandpipers, oo-oo-oo!” 


First, all the sandpipers flew in from the east, and their wings flapped until a high wind was blowing. The little sandpiper kept on chanting and singing, chanting and singing. Then, all the sandpipers came from the west, from the north, and the south, until the whole sky was dark. 


“Do you see?” said the little sandpiper. “I told you there were more sandpipers than whales.” 


“Just wait, said the great whale. He began to sing and chant, sing and chant, calling all the sharks in the ocean. 


The shark, heard the song. Soon all the sharks came from the east. The great whale kept on singing and chanting, and all the sharks came from the west, from the north, and from the south, until the ocean was covered with their high fin-sails. 


“”Look, look!” cried the great whale. “There are many more whales than sandpipers!” 


“Just wait” said the little sandpiper. He began to chant and sing, chant and sing, calling all the cranes in the world. 


The  crane, heard the song. Soon all the cranes came from the east. Then, they came flying from the west, the north, and the south, until the noise was like thunder. 


“Look, look!” cried the little sandpiper. “There are many more sandpipers than whales.” 


The great whale and the little sandpiper kept on calling the fish and the birds with their singing. The tuna, heard it. By and by, all the tunas in the world came swimming from the east, the west, the north, and the south. The  great whale called to all the other sea creatures and the little sandpiper called to all the other birds, and they all came by millions. 


And so it went, the great whale singing and chanting, and the little sandpiper chanting and singing, until all the fishes and birds in the world were called together. The noise could be heard high in the sky and over all the land and sea. And still, no one knew whether there were more whales than sandpipers in the world, or more sandpipers than whales. 


The fish asked the great whale “What shall we do now?” 


“Let’s eat up all the land, so that the birds will die” he said. And they began to eat the land. 


The birds asked the little sandpiper “What shall we do now?” 


“Let’s drink up the whole ocean, so the fish will die” he said. And they began to drink the ocean. 


It took much more time to eat the land than to swallow the water. The birds finished first. They drank up the whole ocean, before the fish had a chance to eat much land. Then, with no water to live in, all the fish died.  


That is, all except the whale. He had a big belly full of water. He could live a whole day on dry land. The whale lay on the dry ocean bottom for a while. Then he spit out the water that he carried. It made a great pool, but not a whole ocean. 


The sea birds began to worry, for they ate fish for food. “We need to have fish” they said. 


So the birds spit out all the water they had swallowed and made the ocean again. One by one, the fish became alive and swam around, as well as ever. Then all the fish and birds swam and flew back to their homes, in the east, the west, the north, the south. Everything was just the same as before. No one knew whether there were more whales or sandpipers in the world. 


So, what do you think this story’s souvenir is? What is the little nugget of truth or wisdom it leaves us with? 


Yes, I think it definitely has to do with don’t let yourselves get so caught up in a silly argument that you end up destroying what you love most – like these fish and birds…..but luckily, they came to their senses, just in time, didn’t they.  So next time you get into an argument, maybe you will remember this story and think about ways to make peace and not more arguments. 


Peace my friends – peace. 


Cheerio then, join me next time for Journey with Story. 

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