#Folktale and #EngQuiz: “The Hedgehog River (Sungai Landak)”

“Sungai Landak” or the Hedgehog River is a river in West Kalimantan. Apparently there is an interesting story behind its name…

The hedgehog river

Once upon a time, there lived a farmer and his wife. They did not have any children. They were old and poor, but happy. They never complained. The neighbors loved them very much. They were very helpful. They liked to help others.

One day the wife told her husband about her dream.

“It was so strange. I was standing in our pond and I saw something shining. I was curious, so I searched for it. I found a small statue! The statue had a shape of a hedgehog. And it could talk!” said the wife.

“The statue said we can get anything from him. We just have to touch his head and mention what we want. He will give it to us. The object will flow from his mouth like water. It will never stop until we touch his head again and say stop,” she continued.

The farmer kept on thinking about his wife’s dream. He planned for the search in his pond and finally did it.

All of sudden, he saw something shining and immediately grabbed it. Yes, it was a hedgehog statue!

“Let’s try it!” he screamed. He asked what the wife wanted.

She said shyly, “Jewelries?”

The farmer touched the statue’s head and said, “Jewelries!”

Amazingly, jewelries were flowing from the statue’s mouth.

They became happy and very rich! They then lived in a big house. They shared their money with their neighbors. Sadly, not all of them were happy.

There was a neighbor who got very jealous. He really wanted to know how the farmer became very rich.

The jealous neighbor secretly went to the farmer’s house. He saw how the statue gave them what they wanted.

“Now I know the secret. I will steal their statue and be richer than them!” the neighbor said to himself.

It was late. The farmer and his wife were asleep. The neighbor slowly went inside the house, took the statue, brought it home.

When the neighbor wanted to try the statue he was thirsty and wanted to drink. He touched the statue’s head and said, “Water!”

The water soon flowed. When he thought it was enough for him to drink, he wanted the statue to stop flowing the water.

He said, “Stop!” But water kept on flowing from the statue’s mouth. He repeated, “Stop!” However, the water did not stop.

Apparently, he forgot to touch the statue’s head. Water kept on flowing and slowly it flooded his house. He got panicked. He asked for help.

People came to see what happened. They were so scared. Slowly the house was swallowed by the water. They did not help, but ran away.

From a distance they saw the level of the water got higher. Slowly it became a river.

Because the river was made of the water flowing from the hedgehog statue, people then named the river as Hedgehog River.


  1. “One day the wife told her husband about her dream, “..I was standing in our pond..”” What is a pond?
  2. [‘s] (apostrophe + “s”) can mean: is, has, or possessive. Mention 3 words in the story with [‘s] that mean possessive.
  3. “I was curious, so I searched for it.” What is curious?
  4. Find the word in the story that is similar to “envy.”
  5. As we have discussed in the first , in this kind of story we always use Past Tense. Find 10 past verbs in the story.
    • Alright fellas, questions 6-10 require your comprehension on the story, plus a little imagination and creativity.
  6. Why do you think the farmer and his wife got the hedgehog statue?
  7. Why did the neighbors love the farmer and his wife very much?
  8. Do you think the neighbor got what he deserved? Why?
  9. What is the moral of the story?
  10. If the statue came to your dream and became yours, what would you do?

Compiled and written by @NenoNeno at @EnglishTips4U on Saturday, May 5, 2012

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