1. What was Valli’s favourite pastime?
Answer: As Valli had no playmate of her age, so her favourite pastime was to stand in her doorway and watch the street. The street outside used to be full of activities which were enough to keep her amused and engaged.
2. What was a source of unending joy for Valli? What was her strongest desire?
Answer: The bus was a source of unending joy for her. The bus used to bring a new set of passengers every-time it came from the town. The diversity of people, their activities were a treat to watch for Valli. Her strongest desire was to take a ride in the bus at least once.
3. What did Valli find out about the bus journey? How did she find out these details?
Answer: Valli tried to listen to her neighbours to get the desired information about the bus journey. She would ask some discrete questions to get more information. She got information about distance of the town from her village and the total journey time it usually took.
4. What do you think Valli was planning to do?
Answer: Till now information provided in the story indicate towards her plan to fulfill her strongest desire which was to go on a bus ride.
5. Why does the conductor call Valli ‘madam’?
Answer: Valli is trying to behave more mature than her age. She is trying to look overconfident and smart. The conductor is amused at her behaviour and in an effort to tease her calls her ‘madam’.
6. Why does Valli stand up on the seat? What does she see now?
Answer: Valli’s view was obstructed because of a canvas blind on the window and because of her small height as well she was unable to have a good view outside. She stood up on her seat to have a better view of the scenery outside. She could see a canal with palm trees, grasslands, distant mountains and blue sky as backdrop. On the other side there was a ditch followed by vast tract of greenery.
7. What does Valli tell the elderly man when he calls her a child?
Answer: Valli doesn’t like to be called a child. She thinks that she is grown up. She says that she had paid her full fair the way adults do. This is typical behaviour shown by many kids of Valli’s age.
8. Why didn’t Valli want to make friends with the elderly woman?
Answer: The elderly woman was having big earlobes with bigger holes. She chewing betel nut and the betel juice was about to seep out of her mouth. She was giving a sight of unrefined elderly lady. That is why Vaali did not want to make friends with her.
9. How did Valli save up money for her first journey? Was it easy for her?
Answer: Valli saved every coin that came her way. She made great sacrifices by controlling her normal childish urges of having candies, toys and joyrides. This must have been difficult for her. Kids find it very difficult to savour a candy or to enjoy a toy.
10. What did Valli see on her way that made her laugh?
Answer: A scared cow was running for her life in the middle of the road. It was jumping with tails up. The more incessantly bus driver honked the more furious its scamper became. Valli could not control her laughter after seeing this.
11. Why didn’t she get off the bus at the bus station?
Answer: She did not know anything about the town so was afraid of getting lost. Moreover, her meticulous savings plan allowed her enough money to buy only tickets for her journey. Additionally, she had to return before her mother could find her missing.
12. Why didn’t Valli want to go to the stall and have a drink? What does this tell you about her?
Answer: She did not want to take obligation from the conductor. This indicates that she is taught of not taking anything from strangers. She may be a small child but she knows how to behave properly in the outside world.
Belinda lived in a little white house,
With a little black kitten and a little grey mouse,
And a little yellow dog and a little red wagon,
And a realio, trulio, little pet dragon.
There was a girl named Belinda who lived with a little black kitten, a little grey mouse, a little yellow dog and a real little dragon. She was a proud owner of a little red wagon.
Now the name of the little black kitten was Ink,
And the little grey mouse, she called him Blink,
And the little yellow dog was sharp as Mustard,
But the dragon was a coward, and she called him Custard.
The kitten was named as Ink, the mouse as Blink, the dog as Mustard and the dragon as Custard.
Custard the dragon had big sharp teeth,
And spikes on top of him and scales underneath,
Mouth like a fireplace, chimney for a nose,
And realio, trulio daggers on his toes.
Custard the dragon had big shrap teeth, and his scales were full of spikes everywhere. Its mouth was like a fireplace and nose was like chimney of that fireplace. Its toes were like sharp daggers.
Belinda was as brave as a barrel full of bears,
And Ink and Blink chased lions down the stairs,
Mustard was as brave as a tiger in a rage,
But Custard cried for a nice safe cage.
Belinda was as brave as a barrel full of bears. Bears are very stout and fearless animals. Ink and Blink were brave enough to chase a lion. Mustard was brave like an angry tiger. But Custard was a coward and always wanted to be in a safe nice cage.
Belinda tickled him, she tickled him unmerciful,
Ink, Blink and Mustard, they rudely called him Percival,
They all sat laughing in the little red wagon
At the realio, trulio, cowardly dragon.
Belinda used to tickle the dragon till it hurt. Ink, Blink, Mustard and Belinda used to make fun at the dragon for its cowardice.
Belinda giggled till she shook the house,
And Blink said Weeck! which is giggling for a mouse,
Ink and Mustard rudely asked his age,
When Custard cried for a nice safe cage.
Whenever, Custard cried for a nice safe cage then everybody else giggled and laughed at it.
Suddenly, suddenly they heard a nasty sound,
And Mustard growled, and they all looked around.
Meowch! cried Ink, and ooh! cried Belinda,
For there was a pirate, climbing in the winda.
They were enjoying the funny moment with Custard then they heard a nasty sound. They saw a pirate coming towards them. All of them shrieked in horror.
Pistol in his left hand, pistol in his right,
And he held in his teeth a cutlass bright,
His beard was black, one leg was wood;
It was clear that the pirate meant no good.
The pirate was looking really menacing. He was holding pistols in both hands, and a bright knife was held between his teeth. One of his legs was made of wood and his beard was horribly black. He was looking real dangerous.
Belinda paled, and she cried Help! Help!
But Mustard fled with a terrified yelp,
Ink trickled down to the bottom of the household,
And little mouse Blink strategically mouseholed.
Belinda paled out of fear and started crying for help. All his brave friends fled away from the scene. Mustard yelled and fled. Ink trickled down to the basement the way real ink trickles down to the bottom. Blink hid strategically in a mousehole.
But up jumped Custard, snorting like an engine,
Clashed his tail like irons in a dungeon,
With a clatter and a clank and a jangling squirm,
He went at the pirate like a robin at a worm.
But Custard jumped and snorted like a live engine. It started clashing its tail tinkling iron in dungeon. It clattered and squirmed its body and jumped at the pirate the way a robin jumps at a tasty worm for meal.
The pirate gaped at Belinda’s dragon,
And gulped some grog from his pocket flagon,
He fired two bullets, but they didn’t hit,
And Custard gobbled him, every bit.
The pirate was astonished and gulped something from his pocket. Then he fired two bullets, but they proved useless. Ultimately the dragon gobbled up the pilot and finished him.
Belinda embraced him, Mustard licked him,
No one mourned for his pirate victim.
Ink and Blink in glee did gyrate
Around the dragon that ate the pirate.
After the pirate was finished, everyone appreciated Custard in its own way. Belinda embraced him, Mustard licked him, Ink and Blink danced in happiness.
But presently up spoke little dog Mustard,
I’d have been twice as brave if I hadn’t been flustered.
And up spoke Ink and up spoke Blink,
We’d have been three times as brave, we think,
And Custard said, I quite agree
That everybody is braver than me.
Then Mustard said that had it not been frightened it would have shown its bravery, similarly Ink and Blink also made tall claims about their bravery. Custard agreed with them that all of them were braver than him.
Belinda still lives in her little white house,
With her little black kitten and her little grey mouse,
And her little yellow dog and her little red wagon,
And her realio, trulio little pet dragon.
Belinda is as brave as a barrel full of bears,
And Ink and Blink chase lions down the stairs,
Mustard is as brave as a tiger in a rage,
But Custard keeps crying for a nice safe cage.
Belinda is still living in her little white house with her friends and her little red wagon. All except Custard still claim to be brave guys. Custard still cries for a nice safe cage.
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