Count S* is completely off his feet. There’s a lot of land, you can’t keep your eyes open enough. Forests to the right, fields to the left. And there are people wandering around: some with dogs, some for sport, and some trying to steal something. Count S* goes out of his castle ten times a day to his hunting grounds on his quad and in full gear: helmet and motorcycle suit. He drives around and checks what’s wrong, who’s breaking the law, who’s suspicious.
Thank God, there are his assistants. An old friend lives on the outskirts, near the field, and even though he is in his eighth decade, his eyes are wide open. If he sees something suspicious he does not hesitate to make a call. A true friend, found so seldom!
Just like today, he called and reported: two rum fellows were moving in the direction of the forest on two bicycles, and moreover, each with a ladder on the frame!
The count consueslly puts on his quad-costume with feeling (rigschtisness). He is the count, not just anyone, he can’t ride out in his underpants!
While getting ready, the “suspicious” are already on the way back from the woods. The man returns along one road with one ladder on the frame, a woman on foot leading a bicycle on the other road back, with a ladder on the frame and some bag dangling.
The man doesn’t need to be touched and he’s big, why provoke? And he had nothing in his hands except the ladder.
So he decides to have it out with the woman.
“What are you doing here circulating with a ladder?” he asks.
The woman slows down and looks defiantly: “What’s it to you?”
The count is indignant, puffing and twirling in his saddle: “You have no respect for my property!”
“What property?” the impudent one wonders out laud. “I’ve just picked some wild plums in the woods, and here’s a ladder, because I can’t reach them without it!”
“What do you mean? In my woods?!” the count jumps up in the saddle.
“What do you mean yours? Who are you?”
“I am the count. Everything here is mine! It all belongs to ME!” the count’s voice sounds theatrical, he turns around pointing, his voice echoing. The crow in the field jumps sideways in fright.
The woman chuckles.
“How cheeky!” thinks the count.
Count S* reminds her once again that these are his plums. The woman responds by trying to shove the bag of plums at him.
“I don’t need it at all! It’s a matter of principle! If everyone starts taking everything out of my forest, and even with ladders, how will it end?”
“…then you wouldn’t have any plums left at all? And which you don’t even need?” the woman rolls her eyes mockingly.
The count has to remind this wicked woman that the law says: she may only gather as much as she can eat in one day.
“Ah, there is such a law! How wonderful! Well, you can sue me, I have plums for two days here!”
“No, it’s a matter of principle!”
“Your plums have already gone moldy and fallen off, are you sorry? Do you need them? You don’t even know where they grow!
“Yet, I do, it’s in this alley!” the count strains to remember and points to the alley of trees in the field.
“But no, the plums are in your forest!”
“There are no plums in the woods!”
“Sure there are, because that’s where I’ve just come from now”.
“You have no idea how many people steal my walnuts…” – the count pitifully tries to change the subject.
“Do you really need them?”
“What for?” the count bursts out. “You have no conscience and respect neither for my possessions, nor for the laws, and you have insulted me to the bottom of my heart with the ladder!” the count proudly turns away, starts his quad and heads for the castle.
“People are completely out of hand! How to explain to these ignorant people that I’ve always been the count here! And nothing about that fact has changed in 2021!”