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How a Bundle of Straw Became a Fortune is the Japanese take on the “exchange” type of story, which we could also call the “pay it forward” type. In it, an individual does a good deed by giving away something, and receives a gift in return; this gift is then given to someone else who needs it, and the hero then receives another “white elephant” in return, which is then passed on to someone else, etc. Finally, our hero receives his ultimate good fortune. We are currently performing a story of this type, The Boy Who Wanted a Drum (India) in our live stage production. It seems like a rather appropriate choice for a holiday season in which so many people give gifts and think about those less fortunate.

By the way, we named the character in our version of the story Keisuke, after a young man we know in Japan. And you may catch the subtle reference to the classic Japanese animated film, Kiki's Delivery Service.

We come to you from Simpsonville, SC, near Greenville. We are taking a bit of a holiday break between our stage performances and our offstage explorations that provide the fodder for our Act!vated Adventures videos. Have a peek at them!

Happy holidays and happy listening, Dennis (Narrator, Charcoal Maker, Blacksmith, Samurai) and Kimberly (Keisuke, Narrator)

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