The boy who liked ice-cream.

Long ago, a boy was growing up in the garden where people could listen to God. His family had all the food they needed, just growing on plants and waiting to be picked. Somehow this boy heard of ice-cream, he was told that it was very cool and delicious. We do not know how he learned about ice-cream, perhaps the birds told him while he was meditating and listening for Godís thoughts.

The boy asked his parents if they could make some ice-cream. They said they could but it would take several days. They had sugar cane in the garden, but coco beans (for the chocolate) were hard to find. The cows were always happy to give cream but, with the warm weather, it was a long journey to get the snow to freeze the ice-cream. If the boy helped and they all worked hard they could have some ice-cream once a week.

That night, during his meditation, they boy asked God about ice-cream. God agreed that ice-cream was sweet to eat and admitted that there was plenty in shops outside the garden. But, just as in the boyís home garden, someone had to do a lot of hard work to make the ice-cream. God seemed to suggest that the boy would be better off eating the good food from the plants in his home garden. God never gave orders, just helpful suggestions, so the boy knew that he was free to go outside the garden and try for himself.

The next morning the boy set off early, he knew he would need to walk for several days to leave the garden and find a shop with ice-cream. As there were no shops in the garden he did not know what a shop was, but he just hoped they would give him some ice-cream. Because of the long walk he picked seven delicious fruits to eat on the way. This fruit was so healthy and good tasting he only needed to eat one each day and he knew he could be away for a week. Two days later the boy reached the outside road that ran around the edge of the garden. He didnít have far to travel before he came to a building with a big glass window in the front of the building; he guessed this was a shop. He pushed through the front door and went inside. The lady in the shop was friendly and helpful, she could see that the boy was from inside Godís garden and he needed to learn about shops. Yes, she had ice-creams but he would need money to buy one. She told the boy that he would need to work for someone to earn money, or he would need to sell some thing to get money.

The boy went back outside the shop to think about what he should do. The people outside the shop gathered around to see this new boy from Godís garden. They looked at his humble clothes and then they all looked at the five delicious fruits he had left for his food. They had never before seen such good food and the boy had soon sold all his fruit for fourteen dollars. The boy rushed back into the shop and found that the ice-creams cost four dollars each. Even though he had grown up in the garden the boy could easily work out that he could buy three ice-creams and have two dollars in change. He bought one ice-cream and took it outside to eat. It was delicious, it had a chocolate covering with caramel just underneath and in the middle was the beautiful cold ice-cream. The boy gobbled up the ice-cream and went straight back to buy another. He ate the second one more slowly, it didnít seem quite as nice as the first; the boy wasnít used to such sweet food and presently he began to feel quite sick. In fact he went out the shop and was sick. When he felt better again, he remembered the sweet taste of the ice-cream and as he had more than four dollars left, he went and bought a third ice-cream, this time he ate it very slowly enjoying the sweet taste and trying hard not to be sick again.

By evening the boy found the weather was getting cold, usually he would stop for meditation, but this time he had to find a nest in amongst the trees where he could sleep for the night. Although he had two dollars left he found that it wouldnít buy much food and it wouldnít pay for a bed to sleep in.

After a cold and sleepless night the boy knew he should go home. He had to walk for two days without any food. When he returned his parents welcomed him, fed him and listened to the story of his adventures. He was glad to be home but he missed the excitement of the world outside.

After several days, he found the food in the garden was boring and too much the same. He started to crave for more ice-creams. He decided to return to the shop but this time he knew how to buy ice-creams. He made a large bag to hang over his shoulder and he filled the bag with twenty of the best fruit. It was hard work carrying all that fruit but the thought of buying ice-creams made him hurry. This time when he reached the shop he knew he had to first sell his fruit before buying any ice-cream. He also knew that he shouldnít eat all the ice-cream at once so he sold two fruits and bought one ice-cream, which he ate slowly enjoying every bit except the drips that ran down his fingers. After two days he sold his fruit to buy ice-creams and it was time for him to go back to Godís garden. He had kept two fruit back so that he could eat these on the way home. But would you believe it, the fruit had gone rotten and he still had no food for his return journey. Again the boy had to hurry home hungry.

After a day of walking he was halfway home and he saw some of the wonderful food fruit growing beside the path. As the fruit was further from the centre of the garden it was not quite as juicy and tasty as the fruit back home. But it was smaller and closer to the shop. He refilled his bag and turned back to the shop. This time he could not get such a good price for the fruit but it sold easily enough. And he didnít have to go back so far to get more.

The boy started to live on the edge of the garden. He was a good worker and farmers were happy to give him a bedroom in exchange for his work in their fields. Every week he disappeared for two days, while he went back into the garden to get more fruit to sell so that he could buy his weekly treat of ice-cream. He had to work hard but it all seemed worthwhile when he could slowly lick his weekly treat.

After a year he noticed that the fruit cores that people had thrown away had seeded and small fruit trees were starting to grow. With his new found farming skills the boy, started to plant an orchard with this new species of fruit from Godís garden. Because it was growing outside the garden the fruit was no longer large and juicy and needed constant care. Nevertheless for the outsiders it was a novel treat and the boy soon had a prosperous orchard. At last he earned enough money to buy a house and wear new clothes and there was still enough money left over to buy ice-creams. The boy found that he had many cares and worries, he missed his loving parents and he missed hearing from God. Oh yes he prayed to God often enough asking for blessings, but with all the worries in his mind he could never properly hear Godís answers.

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