“Appa! It is so quiet here unlike in the city. I don’t see any vehicles on the road. There is no park too. Besides, I don’t have my friends here. I feel bored already,” complained Sundari to her father. Her dad had brought her to his ancestral village during vacation promising she would have great fun.
“Come on, my princess! It’s been only four hours since we came here. There is a lot to explore in this village. Enjoy the countryside, away from the hustle-bustle of the city. Come with me. I will take you on a hike to a stream nearby. You can throw pebbles into it or take a dip if you wish to,” said her father.
Sundari’s dad held her hand and off they went on a hike.
On the way, they saw a few boys playing with a bicycle tire and a stick.
“Appa! They seem to be playing a ‘Boys Game’.”
“What do you mean ‘Boys Game’?”
“Oh! Aren’t some games meant for boys and some for girls? Well, this looks like a ‘Boys Game’ to me.”
“Hmm! There is nothing of that sort. Both can play all games. All you need is enthusiasm. Ha ha!”
“Really?! In that case, I would like to play that game too. Please Appa…”
“Of course, my darling!”
Sundari’s dad talked to the boys. They were willing to teach Sundari the game.
“All you have to do is guide the tire with the stick as it rolls. Make sure it doesn’t fall. If it does, you lose,” said the tallest boy who appeared to be the leader.
“That’s easy. Let me give it try,” said Sundari.
Sundari rolled the tire. As it moved, she ran behind it with a stick.
The boys followed her and so did her father.
“Run Sundari, run,” cheered all the boys.
Sundari had great fun chasing the tire, but soon the tire headed towards the stream ahead.
“Watch out, Sundari,” yelled one of the boys.
But Sundari was so engrossed in the game that she didn’t notice the icky-sticky mud near the stream.
“Whoa! APPA, HELP…!” Sundari yelled at the top of her voice before she slipped and fell. The tire rolled into the stream hitting one of the buffaloes there.
The buffaloes bellowed, the boys shouted and the birds flew shrieking from the trees.
“Are you hurt, my dear?” asked her father panicking.
“No…! My dress has become dirty,” frowned Sundari.
“Hmm! And you yelled for that? Come on. You have to learn to get dirty like the boys too, not just enjoy the games they play,” said Sundari’s father rolling his eyes.
“Ha ha! You are right, Appa!”
“Come Sundari! Let’s take a dip in the stream. It’s cool, “said one of the boys.
Sundari nodded and jumped into the stream with them. She enjoyed playing with the boys thoroughly until sunset.
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