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The Long and Hungry Month of March
The Long and Hungry Month of March

Once there was a husband and wife who fished all summer. In the fall they traded their fish for tea, flour and beef to eat through the winter. And they hoped they would have enough salt fish left to get them through December, January, February, and March until spring. Because if they didn’t, March could be a very long and hungry month indeed.

One day the wife gave her husband a barrel of salt fish to put away. “What for?" he asked. “Well,” she said, “For the long and hungry month of March.”

The winter came and they made it through December, January, and February. But by the end of February the tea ran out and there was very little flour.

Then around the first of March a man came to the door. He was long and tall. He said to the husband “Mister! I’m starving! Can you give me some salt fish to eat?”

“What’s your name?” asked the husband.

“March,” said the long and hungry man.

“Yes,” he said, “I have a whole barrel of fish for you.”

“Oh yes?” said the man.

“Yes, my wife asked me to put away a barrel of salt fish for the long and hungry March. So that must be you!” And he gave the man the barrel of fish.

When the wife came home from their neighbour’s house the husband said, “ That man Mr. March was here for his barrel of fish.”

She said, “What man for what barrel of fish?”

“The one you gave me to put away for the long and hungry March, remember? And I’ve never seen a man so long and hungry-looking as Mr. March, so I gave it to him.”

The wife said she had never seen any husband so silly and foolish. So she went back to the neighbour’s for a cup of tea – at least they still had some left!

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