There once was a young Ryukyuan maiden named Chiru-gwa. She was most beautiful and all of the single young men swarmed around her, asking for her hand in marriage. Chiru-gwa's mother worried that her daughter would end up attracted to an unworthy man. So, the mother went to Sonohyan Utaki to pray for devine guidance in the selection of the perfect man for her young daughter.

A good-for-nothing man named Tara was near the sacred grove and heard the mother's prayers. He set about devising a plan to be sure that he would marry Chiru-gwa.

The following day, the mother returned to the grove to pray for devine guidance - and where Tara was hiding. In a booming voice, Tara spoke out, "I am your god and you must listen very carefully. When you leave the grove today and return to your home you will, along the way, meet the man who shall become your daughter Chiru-gwa's husband. Ask no questions. He is the best man in all of the land."

The mother, shaken, managed to thank her god, bowed and began her journey home.

Along the way she encountered a smiling man, not unpleasant to look upon, who introduced himself as Tara. Upon learning his name she knew that he was not well thought of by the others but thought that he must certainly be the best mate for Chiru-gwa since her prayers had been answered and her instructions were so clear.

So, the wedding was arranged and on the day of marriage Tara dispatched a palanquin in which his bride was to be delivered to him.

As Chiru-gwa was being carried back to Tara, two men who had previously had too much to drink, became weary and stopped, set down the palanquin and went off into the soft grass to sleep.

....... As they slept, the king approached on his way back to Shuri Castle after a long day of hunting. He noticed the palanquin in the middle of the road and demanded to know who was within. One of the king's men returned to inform him that there was a young woman inside who was crying and that there were a couple of drunk men sleeping in the grass nearby.

This disturbed the king greatly and he approached the young woman. He did what he could to calm her down then invited her to stay the night at Shuri instead of waiting outside all night.

Being unhappy with the two scoundrels who had abandoned her and being displeased with whomever would entrust such a noble mission to a couple of drunken louts, he set about a plan to teach Tara a lesson. He commanded that a calf be placed within the palanquin.

The morning sun aroused the drunken bearers and fearful that they were not going to be paid for their work they grabbed onto the palanquin and hurried along the way without noticing who or what was inside. When they got to Tara's home they saw that festivities were underway and that Tara was nervously pacing back and forth, waiting for his bride. Upon sighting the arrival of his prize he rushed to the palanquin and, much to his surprise, out jumped the calf who kicked and jumped then ran away.

Much amusement rippled throughout the crowd and they laughed and said that it was the best for Tara; a just reward for such a lazy man who didn't deserve a bride at all.

Chiru-gwa's mother however, found no amusement in the goings on and sadly lamented that her god must have punished Chiru-gwa by turning her into a calf.

Days later, the mother, still crying, received a message from the king. She was to go immediately to Shuri Castle and was instructed to bring the calf with her!

Upon arrival at Shuri she was greeted by the queen. "Mother!" shouted the queen who ran to embrace the old woman.

You see, Chiru-gwa had fallen in love with the king, and he with her, and the mother's prayer had been answered.