Up to the early 70s, there were no television and daily newspapers in Padada- my hometown. Our main form of information and entertainment during those years was radio. So we listened to radio dramas, to the radio commentaries, and to songs played over the radio. Radio announcers were celebrities, and radio characters were our heroes.
If we don’t like the radio program(s) and for lack of anything else to do before bedtime, we spent our time telling stories; or more accurately, the adults telling the stories and us the younger ones listening to them. On some of these occasions, they played games of wits – the most popular of which are challenging the other people in the crowd if they can solve a puzzle. The dynamics of the puzzle game was amusing. As one person gave his solution, the other people in the group retorts back why the solution is wrong.
Here is one of the puzzles I remember being discussed in one of those. Lets see if you can solve it!
The Rabbit, the Cat, and the Cabbage
A farmer is returning from the farm. With him is his cat, a rabbit and cabbage. On the way home he must cross a river. His boat is small one, allowing him to take only one of the three things. He can’t keep the rabbit and the cabbage together (because the rabbit would eat it), nor the rabbit with the cat (because the cat would eat the rabbit).
How shall the farmer get everything on the other side (without any harm)?
And for my kababayans, the original version is as follows:
Ang Rabbit, ang Iring, ug ang Repolyo
Ang magbabaol pauli na gikan sa iyang umahan. Duna siya dala nga iring, rabbit ug repolyo. Bag-o sya mo-abot sa iya nga balay, kinahanglan nga molabang siya sa usa ka sapa. Pero gamay ra ang iya nga baruto mao nga usa ra sa tulo nya ka dala ang pwede nya nga makarga sa baruto. Dili nya pwede unahon ug dala ang iring unya biyaan ang rabbit ug ang repolyo kay kaunon man sa rabbit ang repolyo. Dili pod nya pwede nga biyaan ang iring ug ang rabbit kay kaunon man sa iring ang rabbit.
Unsaon man iyang himoon aron malabang nya ang rabbit, ang iring ug ang repolyo sa tabok sa sapa nga walay mahitabo sa bisan usa sa tulo?