1Listen from 0:06
Once upon a time in a land far, far away there lived a beautiful princess: she was the princess of the Sleep Kingdom.
The Sleep Kingdom is a wonderful land with a great forest with magical creatures, and there are great plains with magical horses, and there are fields with tiny little mice and there is a magic unicorn that runs through all of these lands.
This unicorn is unlike any you may have seen in your books, because she is pitch black with a beautiful black pearl horn. It is by far the most beautiful, graceful creature that you have ever seen.
2Listen from 0:49
The Sleep Princess had a favourite doll, a small doll with a pink dress and a pink hat. She was very special because she came from a land far away called Sukhothai.
Every night the princess would go and visit the Sukhothai doll in the Sleep Kingdom. This was a magical experience, because in the Awake Kingdom the doll could not speak or play with her, but in the Sleep Kingdom the doll would come to life and they would have the most amazing adventures together.
3Listen from 1:17
One evening in late autumn, the Sleep Princess drifted into her kingdom as she did every night, but to her surprise the Sukhothai doll was already waiting for her when she arrived, and the little doll looked quite distressed.
“Hello, my little doll," said the princess. "Has something bad happened? You look very upset.”
“You see," said the doll, "it is nearly winter now and the animals want to share their food, but they just can't seem to agree on what to share and what to keep for themselves.”
“Oh, that is a simple problem to solve,” said the princess, “everyone just gets equal portions of everything.”
4Listen from 1:58
The doll was a little grumpy – which was very unusual for her. “Do you think I didn't think of that? The problem is that one bag of nuts is not really equal to one bag of leaves because nuts are far more difficult to find, and one bag of acorns is not equal to one bag of fish.”
“Oh my,” said the princess. “I see your problem.”
“And some are meat eaters, and some are fish eaters,” said the Sukhothai doll. “It has never been winter in the Sleep Kingdom before, so nobody knows what to do.”
5Listen from 2:35
“Okay, let's go and see what's going on. Take me to the animals, and I am sure I can talk some sense into them.”
So the little doll jumped up into the air and started spinning around.
One, two, three, four times and after that her little hat started spinning, whhhhrrrrrr.
It spun so fast that it made a giant whirlwind.
“Grab on to my feet,” yelled the doll, and the two of them went whhhrrrr out the window, down the road, out of the town.
6Listen from 3:05
Eventually they came to a place where they saw one tree, two trees, three trees, four trees, five trees until they saw an ocean of trees, and not just normal trees but gigantic, magical trees - trees that were wide and spread their branches, trees that were tall and reached up into the sky, trees that could fill whole buildings they were so big! Some of the trees had roots that you could live under, and there were also tiny little trees growing in the shadows.
7Listen from 3:40
“Wow!" said the Sleep Princess, “I've heard about the Great Forest, but this is just amazing.”
“Oh yes,” said the Sukhothai doll, “it is very beautiful. Come, down there, I think I see something.”
Whhrrrrr, the little hat took them all the way down.
8Listen from 4:01
“No, no, no! I don't want fish; I'm a squirrel, I don't eat fish!” said the squirrel.
“Well, that's not nearly enough nuts to feed my son; I'm not going to take that,” replied the bear.
“What do you mean mushrooms? What am I supposed to do with mushrooms? Who eats mushrooms?” said someone else.
“Leaves, who eats leaves? They're all soggy; they're not even dry and crispy!”
“What's going on here?” said the Sleep Princess.
9Listen from 4:34
“Oh, your Majesty!” everyone exclaimed. They all recognised her immediately because she was very beautiful - her beauty was famous throughout the kingdom, and they all bowed to her. “We beg your pardon, your Majesty, but we are having a bit of a neighbourly dispute. You see, winter is coming and we all need to share our food, we need leaves for blankets and nuts for protein, and some of us need all other kinds of vitamins, and we've all collected some food but now we don't know how to divide it up.”
“Oh,” said the Sleep Princess. “In the Awake Kingdom we have a thing called money, but it is very, very bad and it makes people do very crazy things, but in situations like this it is very useful.”
“Oh,” they said, “we don't really want something like that; we just want something that's fair.”
“Mmm.” The Princess thought about it; then the Sukhothai doll said, “I've got it! I've got it! Come with me, Sleep Princess,” and she turned her hat one, two, three, four times and it started spinning and off they went.
10Listen from 5:55
“Where are we going?” said the Sleep Princess.
“Well,” said the Sukhothai doll, “we're going to a special land: it's the Land of Milk and Honey - that's where all the candy comes from.”
And sure enough, after a little while of flying in the sky, the clouds started to taste like candy floss and become pink and yummy … some of them were purple and blue.
“Yummy – that's quite tasty,” said the Sleep Princess.
11Listen from 6:25
As they broke through the clouds they saw the most colourful city of red and white stripes, green and blue and yellow - tall stickiness and soft marshmallowiness; it was a beautiful city of milk and honey, filled with all of the sweets that have ever been created.
A little dwarf came up to help them. “What can we do you for?” he asked.
“Well,” said the Sleep Princess, “you know how you guys make sweets and you're always looking for new people to enjoy them?”
“Yes, yes, that's what we live for; we just want everyone to enjoy sweets,” he said.
12Listen from 7:05
“Well, we have a problem in the Great Sleep Forest. We need a type of currency but we don't want money because that's icky sticky. So we would like something fun, and when people are done using it they can just eat it, so I was thinking of some kind of sweet.”
“Ah,” said the dwarf. “Well, we have this kind of sweet, but it's a bit sticky and it will stick together. And then we have that kind of sweet, but that melts in hot weather. Then we have this kind of sweet, but it dissolves when water gets on it.”
Then the Sleep Princess jumped up. “I've got it … I've got it. Beans! Do you have any beans?”
13Listen from 7:52
“Oh, oh, oh!” cried the dwarf, “Only the finest jelly beans known to the world! And they are colourful too!”
“Brilliant!” said the Sleep Princess.
“Yes, what a great idea,” said the Sukhothai doll.
14Listen from 8:06
The dwarf went inside his candy house and brought back a magic sack.
“This sack can carry an infinity of sweets. Do you know Mary Poppins? Well, she borrowed a bag like this from us and now they are quite famous in the Awake Kingdom.
So the dwarf filled the magic bag with thousands of jelly beans of every colour that you could imagine – and even a few colours that you couldn't imagine!
“Thank you, thank you!” shouted the two girls as they whizzed back to the Great Sleep Forest.
15Listen from 8:24
“Beans? Beans!” shouted the squirrel in a squeaky voice, “What must we do with these?”
“Yes, what are these for?” asked the bear.
Slurp, slap, swish!
(That's the sound of the fish asking the same question.)
The princess gave each of the forest creatures one of each colour bean to taste.
16Listen from 8:46
“Oh,so that's what a yellow bean tastes like!”
“Wowi-mowi,” said the rabbit, “The purple beans are my favourite.”
Everyone agreed. They loved jelly beans, and what's more, they all had a favourite colour. The Sleep Princess shared out all of the beans evenly amongst the forest creatures. Before long there were great negotiations going on.
17Listen from 9:09
“I'll give you three red jelly beans and one sack of nuts for one red jelly bean and a bag of leaves,” said the beaver.
“Good deal, good deal,” squealed the pig.
“I'll give you five orange jelly beans and one fish for three blue beans and two carrots,” said the rabbit to the bear.
Before long all the forest creatures had just the right amount of food for the winter, and they were laughing and playing together as if nothing had happened.
18Listen from 9:43
“I think our job is done here,” said the Sleep Princess to the Sukhothai doll.
And with one, two, three, four turns of the doll's little hat, the two of them were whizzing through the air – off to find their next adventure.