A Zulu tale tells the story of a hunter from a village deep in the hills of the Zulu Kingdom. He was not as good at hunting as the other hunters were, and soon became very lazy too. But instead of working harder for his quarry he came up with an evil plan…

One day, he was resting under a big Naboom on the plains and saw a mother Cheetah hunting an Impala. While she was hunting her cubs were hidden from sight, observing their mom to learn the skills they would need to be a successful hunter like her. Thanks to her incredible speed she caught the buck without any difficulties, and made calls to the cubs who came running for a bite of tasty Impala.

The Zulu hunter saw this as a good opportunity – he thought if he was able to steal the Cheetah cubs, he could train them to go hunting for him and he could spend more time sleeping under his favourite Naboom tree. The mother Cheetah was thirsty after the exhausting hunt and after eating her share, she slipped away for a drink of water in the nearby stream. The Zulu hunter stalked the little cheetah cubs at the kill and with lightning speed he snatched all three cubs and hid them, before running to the village with the Impala kill to show the villagers that he was the greatest hunter of all time!

In the meantime, the mother Cheetah came back to where she left the cubs at the kill, only to find no sign of them. She cried and cried, the tears running down her face collecting dust from the ground, staining her face while she searched for days on end, looking for her babies.

One day, a village elder went for a walk, wanting to clear his head to find a solution to a problem he had been struggling with. Heading into the direction of the great plains, he suddenly came across the lazy hunter sleeping, with the three Cheetah cubs tied to the Naboom tree. He instantly realised that the hunter was nothing but a cheat and he set the cubs free, kicking the hunter in the side to wake him, and shaming him for the deed he had done.

The cubs made their way back to their mom and she was delighted to be reunited with them. The village elder called a meeting around the fire that night and told all the hunters that the traditional way of hunting is the only, and the most honourable way of hunting.

And so the story goes that, as a reminder of the lazy hunter’s deed, the rain will never be able to wash the Cheetah’s tears away.


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