The Traditions of the Hopi by H. R. Voth
Index Previous Next
56. THE TOAD AND THE SNOW KATCÍNAS. 1
Halíksai! A long time ago they were living in Oraíbi. There was a kiva in the northern part of the village called the Chórzhovi (Bluebird Height). In this kiva one time the Snow Katcínas were practicing for a dance. North of the village at Katcínavala lived the Toad Woman (Machak Wuhti). She had a son. The latter frequently went to the village in the evening to listen to the Katcínas when they were practicing their singing. When he would be lying on the kiva roof looking down, the other young men would pile up on him and thus worry him. So finally he did not do that any more but sat aside and simply listened to the singing of the Katcínas. He usually wore a robe of wildcat skin, as was customary among the young men at that time.
On the eighth day (Totók'a), the women of the village were preparing food for the dance on the next day. The Toad Woman also prepared some píkami and other food. Her son was anxious to see the dance the next day. During the night he did not sleep, but remained awake in the village with the others. Early in the morning the Toad Woman washed his head with suds. When he had dried his hair, his mother got some píkami and they were eating. The sun then rose. He put on his wildcat robe again, and also put on a cap of skin, and then went to the village, as the Katcínas went to the village for the first time.
When he entered the village he put a little paint into a bowl and painted his face. When the children saw him they laughed at him, partly on account of his funny cap. On the plaza the Katcinas were dancing, distributing food among the people at the same time, but nobody gave this youth any food. Soon an old man said to the children who were on the plaza they should take the Toad Boy to some ant hill, because he liked ants very much. There were ants living in different parts of the village. So the children took him to a place and dug out ants so that they were running about in great numbers. The Toad at once commenced to eat them and the children laughed at
him. When the Toad had eaten a great many of the ants, he went back to the plaza again and stayed with the Katcínas and attended the dance all day, enjoying himself.
Towards evening he went home. When he left the village the children followed him, some of them having red piki that the Katcínas had given them, "Give me some of that red piki, too," he said, "because I envy you." So they gave him a very little, which he took home and gave to his mother. She was happy over the red piki, and they ate it. And they are still living there.
180:1 Told by Kwáyeshva (Oraíbi).
Next: 57. The Locust That Came To Life While Being Roasted