|This went on for quite some time.
After a while Hem’s and Haw’s confidence grew into arrogance. Soon they became so comfortable they didn’t even notice what was happening.
As time went on, Sniff and Scurry continued their routine. They arrived early each morning and sniffed and scratched and scurried around Cheese Station C, inspecting the area to see it there had been any changes from the day before. Then they would sit down to nibble on the cheese.
One morning they arrived at Cheese Station C and discovered there were no cheese.
They weren’t surprised. Since Sniff and Scurry had noticed the supply of cheese had been getting smaller every day, they were prepared for the inevitable and knew instinctively what to do.
They looked at each other, removed the running shoes they had tied together and hung conveniently around their necks, put them on their feet and laced them up.
The mice did not overanalyze things. And they were not burdened with many complex beliefs.
To the mice, the problem and the answer were both simple. The situation at Cheese station C had changed. So, Sniff and Scurry decided to change.
They both looked out into the maze. Then Sniff lifted his nose, sniffed, and nodded to Scurry, who took off running through the maze while Sniff followed as fast as he could.
They were quickly off in search of New Cheese.
Later that same day, Hem and Haw arrived at Cheese Station C. They had not been paying attention to the small changes that had been taking place each day, so they took it for granted their Cheese would be there.
They were unprepared for what they found.
“What? No Cheese?” Hem yelled. He continued yelling, “No Cheese? No Cheese?” as though if he shouted loud enough someone would put it back.
“Who moved my Cheese?” he hollered.
Finally, he put his hands on his hips, his face turned red, and he screamed at the top of his voice, “It’s not fair!”
Haw just shook his head in disbelief. He, too had counted on finding Cheese at Cheese Station C. He stood there for a long time, frozen with shock. He was just not ready for this.
Hem was yelling something, but Haw didn’t want to hear it. He didn’t want to deal with what was facing him, so he just tuned everything out.
The little people’s behavior was not very attractive or productive but it was understandable.
Finding Cheese wasn’t easy, and it mean great deal more to the little people than just having enough of it to eat every day.
Finding Cheese was the littlepeople’s way of getting what they thought they needed to be happy. They had their own ideas of what Cheese meant to them, depending on their taste.
For some, finding Cheese was having material things. For others it was enjoying good health, or developing a spiritual sense of well-being.
For Haw, Cheese just meant feeling safe, having loving family someday and living in a cozy cottage on Cheddar Lane.
To Hem, Cheese was becoming A Big Cheese in charge of others and owning a big house atop Camembert Hill.
Because Cheese was important to them, the two little people spent a long time trying to decide what to do. All they could think of was to keep looking around Cheeseless Station C to see if the Cheese was really gone.
While Sniff and Scurry had quickly moved on, Hem and Haw continued to hem and haw.
They ranted and raved at the injustice of it all. Haw started to get depressed. What would happen if the Cheese wasn’t there tomorrow? He has made future plans based on this Cheese.
The little people couldn’t believe it. How could this have happened? No one had warned them. It wasn’t right. It was not the way things were supposed to be.
Hem and Haw went home that night hungry and discouraged. But before they left, Haw wrote on the wall: