This is a story that was told to a little girl by her great-great-great-great grandmother many, many years ago.
Once upon a time there was a little old man and a little old woman who lived together in a little house on the edge of the forest. They were very happy together, but wanted to have a child badly, but couldn’t have one. One day, when the little old woman was baking cookies, she cut the dough in the form of a little man and put it in the oven.
A little while later she checked the oven to see if the cookie was done. When she opened the oven, the little gingerbread man jumped out of the oven and started to run! The old woman called her husband and together they ran after the gingerbread man, but they couldn’t catch him.
The gingerbread man arrived at an old barn with shredders. While he was running passed he yelled to the shredders: ‘I ran away from an old woman and man. And I can also run away from you. Yes, I can!’ The barn with the shredders started running after the gingerbread man. And though they thought to be very quick, they didn’t manage to catch the little man.
So the gingerbread man ran further and came across a field with lawnmowers and yelled: ‘I ran away from an old man and woman. I also ran away from a barn with shredders. So I can also run away from you. Yes, I can!’ And so the lawnmowers started running after the gingerbread man, but they also couldn’t catch him.
He ran further and ran into a cow and yelled: ‘I ran away from an old man and woman. A barn of shredders couldn’t catch me. A field of lawnmowers didn’t come close. And I will run from you. Yes, I can!’ And although the cow started running immediately, the cow also couldn’t keep up.
The gingerbread man ran into a pig and yelled in his passing: ‘I ran away from an old woman and man, a barn of shredders and a field of lawnmowers couldn’t keep up. And also the cow didn’t manage. I shall now run away from you. Yes, I can!’ The pig started running, but it didn’t manage to come close.
Then he passed a fox and said: ‘I ran away from an old woman and man. A barn of shredders, a field of lawnmowers, a cow and a pig couldn’t keep up with me. Now I shall run away from you. Yes, I can!’ The fox started running, but foxes are as quick as lighting and in no time he had caught up with the gingerbread man and started eating him.
’Oh no, a quarter of me has been eaten’, said the gingerbread man. ‘Oh no, half of me has been eaten’, continued the man. And soon: ‘Three quarters of me has been eaten.’ And finally: ‘I have been eaten whole’, and since nobody has heard of the gingerbread man ever again.