There are birds who like winter. They always come flying when snow falls. It doesn’t make them feel cold at all. You’ve surely seen them before. They are the crows. One winter, they came to our village too.
At that time, Little Karin was sitting on her sled on a hill. She was looking sadly at the big slope ahead of her, wiping frozen tears off her face. Just then, crows flew down to her. They scuttled around little Karin, peeking up at her. They noticed that she was sad, but they didn’t have the courage to approach her. Until the smallest in the flock gradually hopped over to Karin. “What is it, crow, what would you like?” the girl said, looking at the crow with her sad eyes.
“I wanted to know why you’re so sad. Perhaps I could cheer you up,” the little crow replied. “Wait, you can speak? I must be dreaming,” little Karin asked in surprise. The crow scuttled even closer to the girl and said: “Yes, of course I can speak. You’re not dreaming. But other children and adults don’t know that I can. And now tell me what made you so sad.”
“I’m too small. Do you see this hill, crow? I can’t go sledding on it. They said I could hurt myself. I can only go down smaller hills. Because I am small. What if I never grow taller?” little Karin confessed. The crow listened to the little girl. She was glad that the girl told her everything and decided to cheer her up.
And so she said: “My little friend, you don’t have to worry that you won’t grow any taller. In time you’ll be bigger, you’ll see. I will tell you what to do in order to grow. Alright? You must eat well and go to bed on time. And you’ll see that you’ll grow. Next year in winter, I will fly back here to see you and I bet you will be taller. And now come, we’ll make a plan together. Stand here by the tree and lean your back against it.”
As Karin did so, the crow flew up to her head and scratched a groove into its trunk with her beak. “See, and now we know how tall you are. Next year we will meet here, and you will stand next to the tree again. You’ll see that we’ll have to make a higher groove next time. And until then, you know what to do?” the crow asked little Karin.
“Yes, I know. Eat well and go to bed early,” little Karin said with a smile. “Yes, that’s right. Excellent. Until you grow, enjoy the things you can do. There’s so many of those. You just have to think about it for a minute. Believe me,” the crow replied, said goodbye to Karin, and flew back to the others.
The little girl was not sad anymore. She didn’t forget what the crow had told her. She ate well all year, went to bed on time, and this whole time she enjoyed everything she could. And it was a lot of things.
When winter arrived again, Karin waited for the crow by the tree. And the crow did come. But it wasn’t as small as it used to be either. It had grown into a beautiful big bird. She greeted Karin and then flew over to the tree right away, curious to see where the last groove she scratched into the tree was. She was right. The girl was taller, and she was very happy about it. Little Karin and the crow spoke for a long time. They were looking forward to seeing each other next winter.