Once upon a time there was a little girl named Betushka. She lived with her mother, a poor widow who had only a tumbledown cottage and two goats. But despite this poverty, Betushka was always merry.
From spring to autumn Betushka drove the goats each day to pasture in a birch wood. Every morning her mother put a slice of bread and an empty spindle into her bag. The spindle would hold the flaxen thread she would spin while she watched the goats. She was too poor to own a distaff on which to ... read next