After the door was opened, the owner of the house introduced himself as he bowed to them and said in a humble tone, "You are welcome to my house. What can I do for you?"
Our friends were amazed at this act. Judging from his appearance, he did not look very handsome. But his heart seemed to be flowing with kindness.
The Friendly Statue shook hands with this old gentleman and said, "Well these friends of mine were hoping if you might have something for them to eat."
"Come in and make yourselves at home," replied the good man. Then he led them into his old house. There was nothing interesting to marvel at in this house.
So they all introduced themselves to him. He told them that his name was Mr. Simple, because he had a simple life.
"Now all I have is peanut butter sandwiches and coffee," he explained to his visitors.
"That would do," replied George.
"Is that all you eat?" asked Natasha in astonishment.
"That's my breakfast, lunch and supper," smiled the old fellow.
Then he went away to prepare breakfast. But then he returned to them and asked, "Could you wait a half an hour? It will rain very soon."
"What does rain have to do with breakfast?" was George's question.
The old gentleman replied, "Don't you know? We get our coffee from the rain."
"So does it rain coffee in here?" asked the Friendly Statue in amazement.
"To be sure," was the reply. "Where do you come from?"
They told him where each of them is from.
Then he said in a cheerful tone, "Come out and see how it rains coffee!"
So they all followed him. He also dragged a tank with him to fill it with coffee.
Now they did not go out, lest they get wet with coffee. So they all stood at the door. Only the tank was put outside.
Then, it began to rain. Our friends stood there watching motionless. It was certainly amazing to see it raining coffee.
Now when the tank was filled to the top, Mr. Simple closed it and took it inside the house. Of course the tank was soaked with coffee. So Mr. Simple brought a towel and dried it up.
"Where do you get the peanut butter sandwiches from, sir?" asked Natasha.
"They grow in my garden," he replied cheerfully. "I have a tree of peanut butter sandwiches, you know."
"Don't they get wet when it rains?" she asked surprisingly.
But before he could answer, she added meekly, "You see, this is a different world to me. So please pardon me for asking a lot of questions."
"O no worries," replied Mr. Simple positively. "I don't mind you asking a lot of questions at all. As for my tree, I have a roof that protects it from rain."
"Then how does it grow?" Natasha asked, marveling at the idea of a sandwiches tree.
"It grows without rain or water," sang the old gentleman. "It's a magical tree."
Then he took them into his garden to show them that magical tree, where peanut butter sandwiches grew.
They all marveled for a minute, and then began to pick up some sandwiches for breakfast.
After that, they all returned into the warm house, where the coffee was awaiting them.
It was really funny to see the cat and the donkey eating peanut butter and drinking coffee. They ate and drank without complaining. In fact, they declared that this was the best meal that they had ever eaten.
George and Natasha also loved their breakfast. Coffee and peanut butter were common in Canada. So their breakfast did not feel or taste strange.
As for the Friendly Statue, he could not eat. So he kept going around the house, singing to himself.
Turning to the cat the old gentleman asked, "What's your name, ma'am?"
"I have no name," sighed the pretty cat. "I lived all by myself. So no one talked to me."
"I'm going to give you one," smiled Mr. Simple. "Your name shall be Caty. Do you like that?"
"It's a pretty name, sir," smiled the cat. "Thank you! So from now on, I'm Caty." It is pronounced like 'Katie.'
"What about you?" asked Mr. Simple, turning to the interesting donkey.
"I have no name either," replied the poor donkey. "So could you give me one, please?"
"Certainly," was Mr. Simple's happy reply. "Your name shall be 'Mr. Don.'"
"Thank you, sir!" answered the donkey. So his name became Mr. Don, or just Don.
Mr. Simple was interested in our world. So he asked George and Natasha to tell him about it.
"Well magic is not a common thing in there," began Natasha. "We have magicians, but they're not as powerful as the magicians of this country." Then she told him all about the history, geography and politics of our world.
When the breakfast was over, Natasha cleaned the table. Then she washed the dishes and put them in their proper place.
"You didn't have to do that, ma'am," the good man told her.
"I didn't do anything, sir," replied the little girl sweetly. "Well it wasn't much work anyways."
After that, Mr. Simple had a long but interesting conversation with his visitors. They told him all about themselves, including their hard journey.
"So in what country or city are we in?" was the Friendly Statue's question.
"You are in the country of Magica and in the city of Gener," was the reply.
"Well at least we're still in Magica," laughed George.
"How far are we from the capital city?" asked the statue.
"Very far, sir," Mr. Simple told him. "Not only that, but there are many evil nations on the way to the capital city. I doubt that you will still be alive if you go among them."
"O my!" cried Natasha in distress. "But we have to find Mr. Wishman no matter what."
"Have faith and all of your wishes will be granted, dear," the Friendly Statue assured her.
"I agree with Mr. Friendly Statue," George added, for he was very wise as well.
"Well you can stay in my house as much as you like," said Mr. Simple kindly.
"I think we must start moving at once," the Friendly Statue told them. "I know that the road is very dangerous. Nevertheless, I believe that if we don't face danger, we will never be able to fight it."
"These are my words!" laughed George.
"There's only one true version of wisdom," said the statue, addressing George. "So if we're both wise, then our words will be the same. That's why you agreed with what I've said."
Meanwhile the rest of them were preparing to restart their journey. They would've made a lot of progress if the earthquake had not happened last night.
Mr. Simple filled many bags with sandwiches and coffee. These were put in a separate bag, because the bag that the Friendly Statue carried was filled with fruits, vegetables and water.
"Then Mr. Simple brought a little bottle. He explained, "I will pour little of its content into both bags. This will keep everything cool and fresh."
"For how long?" asked Natasha, marveling at the magic of what this bottle contained.
"For a whole day," smiled Mr. Simple. "And then you can pour more."
"I'm coming with you, if you don't mind," the kind fellow told them.
"You've been too kind to us to come and join in our danger, sir," replied Natasha.
"My conscience does not permit me to let you go on your own," he smiled. "I won't leave you until each one of you is safely in his or her own house, no matter what it will cost me."
So they agreed to add him to their party. So the travelers were now Natasha and George, the Friendly Statue, Caty the cat, Don the donkey, and Mr. Simple.