Thursday, 15 November 2012


Jerry had only one friend. Sea.

He lived with his parents and two sisters in a small and shabby village. They had a small temporary accommodation by the sea, made out of mud walls and coconut leaves shed for the roof.

Gazing the sea whole through the day was what kept Jerry busy. He knew every thing about that stretch of the sea.  He knew how high waves reaches during full moon night. He knew which seasons are not safe for swimming. And, only he knew when fishes come to the shore. Crabs, Jelly fishes and star fishes were his toys.

He learned the various color changes, the sky go through in due course of the day and its reflection in the sea. The pastel shades of orange, red, yellow and patterns of clouds mesmerized him. He could spend days after days sitting by the coconut tree and glancing the sea. He talked everything with the sands, sea breezes and shells.

One such day, Jerry after his school, came straight to his favorite coconut tree. Dumped his bag, and created a virtual seat in the sand. He took out few peanuts from his back-pocket and started munching them while glancing the distant ship in the sea.

Bunch of kids were throwing big balls in the sea and few were merely taking strolls holding parent's hand. Most of them were visitors, staying in nearby resorts. Some getting drenched, some splashing waters on face. There was girl in lovely yellow frock jumping along the shore. A boy almost of Jerry's age was running towards the sea, his father calling him to came back.

Munching peanuts, while the sun sets was a regular adventure for Jerry. He often took nap imagining to be sailor some day. He would have fall asleep, had that scream not woke him up.

"Help...Help" a loud voice of a man came to him from a distance. To Jerry's dismay he was same man whose voice he heard sometime back.

He got up, dusting the sands out of his grey pants and ran towards the man.

"What happened? " asked Jerry.
"My son is drowning.. Help please" came the frantic voice.

Jerry had always witnessed the sea from a distance, though he was well aware of the tides and ebbs of the sea , he never really swam miles across. But he have time to think of his own ability, he have to jump and save the drowning kid, he felt.

He immediately plunged into sea, barely managed to locate the kid amidst high waves. After few awkward moves, high efforts, thumping effortlessly in middle of the sea, Jerry managed to grab him.

After an hour of tiresome effort, Jerry saved the kid.
 It took quite some time to push the water out from the lungs of the kid and made him feel somewhat normal.

Kid's father hugged Jerry and couldn't thanked him enough. He eyes could only said it all.
Jerry also took sometime to believe what he actually did. He was still not believing it.
"What you want, my boy. I can trade my life " , asked kid's father almost pleading.
"Nothing.. I just did because that's what felt right that moment." replied Jerry.
"You don't have to tell me that, still I will be glad if I can make you happy. Please give me that chance" Father insisted.
Jerry cleaned his sand face, took a deep sigh and look at the sea again. He thought for a while and replied "I had seen this sea for ages, I know how it look by all angles and seasons. Though I have never seen it from the top. I'll like to see that one day."

Father knew what he have to do now. He went to Jerry's home , told the entire saga of Jerry's bravery to his parents. Thanked them and asked their permission to take Jerry with them for few days to their place in Mumbai. Jerry's parent agreed, almost immediately.

Then came the day, when Jerry boarded the plane to Mumbai. As the plane took off, few moments later he could see everything from an altitude. Sea looked beautiful from above. Blue patch it was. Coconut trees joined hands by the shore.

As the plane went higher, Jerry kept munching his peanuts and watched the sea became smaller.

Saturday, 20 October 2012

Tale of colors

Brown dog and green frog were the newest friends in the locality. They met last monsoon. That day it was raining heavily. Frog was busy gulping some rain water and making tarr..taarr sound. Dog liked hearing him. Frog loved how the dog was all wet but still was relaxing in middle of road , like a king.

Rain connected them. Tar-tar and Bhow-bhow started being in harmony.

Few days later, dog walked up to the frog. Introducing himself with a warm smile, saying "Of this street, I am the King / Often thought of, giving you a ping".
Frog loved him even more for that. Frog introduced himself back, saying "Yes, we will glue / did u like my color blue?"

 Pic courtesy : and

Dog said "Blue ? You are of lovely green color !"
Frog thought its his prank, so repeated saying .. "Nah.. I am blue, nice royal blue"
"You must be kidding, I know your are tiny and may not see your body, but color is something everyone knows." Shrugged Dog.

Frog was clueless by now, he was running out of his reasoning to convince Dog about his blue color.
Dog had to do something now, he called the passing cat, sleeping squirrel on the tree, hiding mouse in the sewage tank and fluttering butterfly from the nearby garden. To frog's utter dismay everyone replied unanimously, "color green".
Closing his eyes, meekly frog said "You being the King of the street, everyone is trying to confirm your thought. They are pleasing you"

Dog was fuming by then. "Lets see a mirror, you will know by yourself" he shrugged. Dog lived with humans for decades, he knew what mirror is. He managed to grab a mirror from the nearby dustbin and showed it to the frog. Looking at green frog on the other side of the mirror, frog got scared. He had no clue who that was or what a mirror is.
"Please ask that green Frog not to look at me like this" he said.
Dog understood there is no point making him understand the whole mirror concept. He had to device some other way, and that too quickly. "Okay, whom you trust the most ?" He asked. "My mom", replied Frog.
Dog got up, stretched himself.. and said "Lets go to your mom".

It was family of all green frogs. Mom frog was busy cooking the dinner. Dog approached her, introduced himself, he then awaited for Frog's mom to introduce herself before they get into the discussion of color coding.
Frog's mom returned the smile back while wiping her hands on the kitchen napkin. She sat beside the Dog, and said "Excuse my look, its all the cooking that might made me look red, I am otherwise a pink Mom Frog"

Dog started smiling, he knew by now that the color confusion runs in the frog family. He left their place, thinking how it feels to imagine a color for yourself which you are not. Something he never tried. Exiting and adventurous it was for him. He crossed the bridge, singing... "Of this street, I am the King / Pink color, now I am being".

Thursday, 27 September 2012

A trip to Pahadpur

Vacations meant Pahadpur trips, for Hula. Just after his final exams every year, he along with his sister Mimi made a train journey to Pahadpur. His grand-parents' place. A small Village surrounded by hills and lush greenery. what he liked the most was, you pick any road and it would always be surrounded by hills from three sides. You could pluck fruits from trees and fetch water from the well. During his last vacation, while he learned how to swim in the nearby pond Mimi learned how to keep a wheel rotating by giving it the required inertia using a wooden stick.

Hula and Mimi's arrival every year was no less than any celebration for grandpa and grandma as well. Grandma prepared coconut laddoos, banana chips and fresh jaggery. Grandpa deposited the security amount in local library, where Hula and Mimi could now have access to 4 books a day.

There was only one thing that brought the disagreement between two generations; the habit of Hula and Mimi of loitering in bed till 11 in the morning. No matter how much they tried inculcating the early-bed-early-rise manner, it never worked. This time Grandpa was all determined to kick Hula and Mimi out of bed by 7.

Grandpa had plans. He always had. Last Dusshehra, he selected 10 most corrupt policemen and made them each a Ravana's head in the local RamLeela. When they were on stage, the whole village ridiculed them. While Ram was busy shooting plastic arrow on him, villagers made sure each Ravana's head is targeted well by rotten tomatoes. For many months, police worked the way they were supposed to. Grandpa, since that day, acquired the chief planner role for all the small or big issues in village.

Hula and Mimi, arrived Granpa's place on the scheduled date. Greeted by fresh lemon water and besan ladoos. Soon they discovered the small pond inside their house filled with gold fishes. This pond had dried up in last some years. It was quite a surprise this time. Mimi loved their color, while Hula was excited to see them in motion. Till evening they played with the fishes , feeding them, making them move in direction of their finger, touching them and whistling at them.
Pic courtesy :

Grandpa was happy seeing the kids enjoying. He went to the kids and said "Its lovely to old eyes, seeing you enjoying with fishes. Though the sad part is, we will have to clear them all and probably will have to sell them off".
Shocked Hula , asked "Oh.. why so ?"
"Me and your Grandma had huge dispute over who will pay for their food. she denied. She doesn't like fishes it seems. she said , she had bore enough the extra cost for my idiosyncrasies. She is not going to pay a single penny this time. And I don't have any money. Its she who takes care of all the finances." said Grandpa
"but .. I have Rs. 200 and so is Hula. Papa gave us as our monthly pocket money. Can the fishes survive on that?" asked Mimi.
"They can , but only for a few days. Their food is costly these days. Also, we have to put medicine in the task. Clean it up every week, and refill it with fresh water." said Grandpa, meekly.

He continued "I have a plan though, your grandma gets up at 6:30 everyday, takes bath and goes to Ganges to offer her prayer. She usually comes back by 7:30. I am quite old and inefficient to open her almirah and take some money out. But , you two are stars. If you can enter her room by 7, we can manage to have some money. Only thing you have to keep in mind is, we cannot take all money , else grandma will have doubts, you can do this for small amounts for 20-21 days and she will hardly notice. After 20 odd days we will have enough money to make the fishes survive for a year".

Grandma was happy seeing the kids running around the house early in the morning ,since last few days.
"seems they have started waking up early" she chuckled.
"yes, per my plan they will wake up for another few days, and once they do it for 21 days continuously, it will become their habit" said grandpa sheepishly.
"Plan ?! , is it something to do with missing money from my glass bowl, since last few days ?" inquired grandma.
she met with grandpa's nodding smile. She wasn't sure which expression she should carry , of smile or anger. Keeping a straight face finally, she asked "but in the process are you not teaching them to steal ?"

"Not to worry, they know the difference of right and wrong. What they didn't was discipline. They are stealing it to arrange money to feed the fishes. They will never steal for wrong reasons. I know my kids." said Grandpa. After a brief pause he continued ".. also these harmless stealing becomes part of our childhood stories, don't you remember how we used to steal mangoes from RadhaRam chacha's orchard ? and he used to chase us with his wooden stick ?"

".. yes, yes.." replied grandma.. finishing the sentence with her toothless grin.

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Sia and Mop

On her fifth birthday, her uncle gifted her Jack London's White Fang. The story takes place in Yukon Territory, Canada, and details a wild wolfdog's journey to domestication. Since then Sia loved reading about dogs.

Much before this; her dad had once gifted her "My big book on Dog", it had life-size pictures of various breeds of dog. She couldn't understand the details, but appreciated the glossy pictures as a kid. She touched them, adored them and smiled, looking at them. Last week she started reading it all over again and was amazed to know about Pomeranian, German Shepherd, Labrador, Golden Retriever, Yorkshire and few more.
Mimi and Kim were Sia's friends. They all stayed in the same neighborhood. They all knew about Sia's fascination of dogs. They gifted her Dog shaped pencil holder and a dog cut out bookmark on new year.

The exams were about to begin and Sia had been asked to spend less time with Mimi and Kim and study more. During one such day, Sia was taking a stroll in her lawn when she saw a puppy trying to slid beneath the main gate; trying to enter their house. Sia couldn't control her laugh. The puppy seemed to have a perfect commando training to slid through the gate. She loved him immediately. She opened the gate slightly , helping the puppy to enter the house. The way it was swinging the tail from side-to-side, it was enough an indication for Sia to know how happy the puppy was. She waved her hand over its fur and it kept swinging his tail. Sia managed to get some milk from mamma’s kitchen and fed the puppy.
It was of no fancy breed she read on "My big book on Dog", but it had spark in his eyes, which made Sia love him even more.

She knew her parent's reservation against having any pet, hence didn't try convincing them to keep the puppy.
Anyway, with exams knocking at the door, she could not afford to have a puppy around.
Half-heartedly she opened the door and let puppy go, surprisingly it was reluctant enough even to get up. Against all her wish, she lifted him and left him in the ground next to their cottage. She came back and closed the door.

She tried hard concentrating on her studies that day.
"Mop" that’s what she started calling him, for no particular reasons but that’s what crossed her mind while thinking of him.

Next day, same time, while taking her evening stroll she saw him again. Trying to slid beneath the main gate, like the same perfect commando; crawling smoothly yet cautiously.
"Mop" !! Sia screamed on top of her voice. She knew dogs have great smelling power and can identify the same place in reference with object or people.

Since that day , it was quite a ritual. Mop used to visit Sia in the evening and she used to feed him with Milk or Chicken stew. Sia always wondered how Mop managed to be so punctual. How dogs keep track of time.. was something she didn’t have an answer to.

Pic Courtesy :

Exams were over. Summer vacations had started.

In the same month, Sia's dad got a promotion and was allotted a new house meant for managers. It was 5 streets down from where they were presently staying. When Sia got the news, she was heartbroken. It was impossible for her to imagine a day without Mimi, Kim… and now Mop.

Two weeks had passed since they had shifted to the new house. Sia’s parents were busy getting the house in order. With no school and no friends Sia tried confiding in her books. When she read about dogs. She missed Mop even more.
She looked at the gate of the new house, and started imagining Mop sliding beneath it. She felt she is actually seeing Mop. She rubbed her eyes in disbelief. It was Mop! Her commando !

It took two weeks , but Mop had found her out. Sia was elated. She hugged him, pinching herself to be sure it was no dream.

All the books that Sia read, said "A dog is always a man's best friend".
Only now she knew , why.

Thursday, 13 September 2012

Hula and the Kite

It was Makar sankranti on a chilling day in January. Hula always waited for this day every year to get a colorful kite. Hula's father knew his fascination for kites and always made sure that every business trip he made, he remembered to bring a memento that reflected a kite.

On that day Hula was dressed up in a bright tee and jeans that he got on his last birthday when he turned 3.
Hula and dad were walking holding hands, grinning ear to ear. They just crossed the main gate of their housing complex. A long series of temporary establishments were encroaching the way further. These quarters were made by the construction workers, employed by the builder , building a 12 floor apartment nearby.

Hula , high on enthusiasm was running and jumping in between. He searched few shells from the sand heap lying in the construction site. He hopped few small heaps and in a moment of carelessness, he bent his right foot and fall flat on his face. He had bruises on his face.
His right foot felt heavy and he almost found it impossible to stand on his feet.
His father took him on his lap, half scolding, half consoling.

Sufi, the elder son of a construction worker saw it all from a distance. He came quickly with a piece of cloth and a glass of water. He handed them to Hula's dad, who then cleaned the face with the cloth. Hula sipped some water from the glass and felt better. He looked at Sufi and smiled faintly.

Father took him back home, and the kite purchase plan been scrapped.

Few days later, while visiting the market Hula asked his dad to buy him a Kite, he then stopped for a while and asked him to buy 2 kites.

Dad : "Why 2, you want another as a compensation for not getting the Kite on Makar Sankranti ?"
Hula : "Dad, 1 for me, one for the Sufi, who helped me when I had a great fall"
Dad : "Why you want to give him a kite?"
Hula : "Dad, when I drank that water I felt so relaxed, never any glass of water made me feel so good. Whenever I will drink water, I think I'll remember him. So I want to gift him a kite, so that whenever he will see a kite flying in the sky, he may remember me. "

Dad bought two kites that day, a red one with blue stripes and a green one with orange dots. He never felt so happy buying kites for Hula.

Tuesday, 11 September 2012

The Story Hook - How and Why

"The story hook" was conceived while a mother was putting her tiny tot to sleep, telling random stories. Toddler everyday gave mother a "word", and like extempore speech the mother started weaving a story around the same.
Compiling those stories will be an attempt to make them available for each child striving for a story, learning various objects and situation in the due course and setting the wings of imagination free.
An effort to present a fresh new story every week from the characters living in fiction, animals traversing in jungles and everything in between.
Subtle moral will be hidden in each stories and will ensure fun, learning and imagination.

This blog welcomes all those who like to be part of this journey and share some of the stories they might be hiding in their ever creative brain.

Join us and together lets feed each child a story.