Thus They Told Us
Ełyin Uqu Ch'ul'an
We Went For Spruce Hen
Told by Walter Johnson
Thus They Told Us

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Sukdu neł nuhtghelnek.
I will tell a story.

Ch'anik'ena ch'ghila ghu.
We were children then.

Shihdi hluzhun shheya hdghila.
I was ten years old then.

Shingha hdi hluzhun ch'qilu veq'di.
And my older brother [Gust Jensen] was fifteen.

Chu ts'iłegh na'unkda ghun, "Shtuhench'k'dghuttił," ch'etni, "ełyin uqu."
And one time we said to our mother, "We will go hunting for spruce hen."

Ch'u ch'u shtuhench'k'dghastun.
And we went hunting.

Łuq'u gheli nuch'uyuł ełyin qelah ghu.
We went all over where those spruce hens usually are.

Ch'u k'qisen, ch'u qanich'ey ch'u ełyin ghini kisht'a nch'u tnilts'igh.
But there were none, it was windy, and not many of those spruce hen were staying there.

Ch'u ch'u nuts'tasdyu. Nch'u chich'k'diłnil.
And we went back. We had not killed anything.

Ch'u qenq'a ghu qanach'tasdyu ghu ełyin ch'ghi'an.
And as we came back to the house then we saw a spruce hen.

.22 izin hdi ch'ighetneq ełyin nułtu.
We had taken a .22 rifle for the spruce hen.

Q'u shingha ghun, "Ełyin gini nch'u chich'diłnil da, yada q'u ch'tulqat?" shełni.
And my older brother said to me, "If we do not kill any spruce hen, what are we going to eat?"

"Nuch'idyu da yada q'u ch'k'tulqat, ch'u ch'dichin gheli, ch'u," shełni.
"When we return, what are we going to eat? We are really hungry," he says to me.

"Nuch'tudyuł ch'u shotgun ch'itułkeł.
"We will go back, and we'll bring the shotgun.

Ch'u shotgun eł tits'tinułtl'es.
We can shoot it with a shotgun.

Gin k'i .22 gin k'i qil.
This .22 is no good.

Henda nch'u ch'tinułtl'es."
We might not hit it.

Ch'u nuch'tasdyu, ch'hdułtesh, maybe half a mile hqugh sht'a naqenq'a qilan.
And we started back and we ran maybe for half a mile to our house.

Ch'u nuch'idyu ch'u shotgun ch'ighetneq ch'u svinits.
And we returned and we got the shotgun and shells.

Vech' nuch'tasdyu. Ełyin ghini janq'u yet ghu zdu.
We then started back to it [the spruce hen]. It was still sitting right there.

Ch'valaq' zdu ch'u yenałtl'es shotgun eł.
It was sitting on a spruce and he shot it with the shotgun.

Ch'u veł nuch'tasdyu ch'u yethdi ch'dashdlach tets ghu.
And we returned with it and then we cooked it that night.


Thus They Told Us