On the long ride to BC yesterday, I was able to finish Aschenputtel. (For German practice, I've been reading in a little bilingual edition of the Brothers Grimm.)
It's another rather gruesome story with a lot of mixed messages. Here's what I learned:
The advice of one's mother is worth heeding.
Fathers cannot be trusted to protect their children from abusers.
Sometimes the pretty ones are evil.
Sometimes you have to put with oppression, but nevertheless you must be on the lookout for a way out.
Prayerful grief at the graves of loved ones is dear to God.
Be modest in what you ask of other people, but bold in what you ask of Providence.
People sometimes make promises without any intention of keeping them.
Lentils are worth the trouble.
The natural world is on the side of the good.
Nice clothes matter for making a first impression, but after that not so much.
Playing 'hard to get' works.
Doing violence to yourself to fit in will backfire, and you will end up crippled and bloody.
Men prefer women with small feet.