You Damaged My Cylcle!
Shankar often borrowed his friend Arjun’s bicycle. It was a geared, lovely cycle, which Arjun’s parents had gifted him for topping the class the previous term. Both studied instandard IX in the same school.
Shankar loved the bike too and often borrowed it. He usually travelled by bus to tuition – the teacher’s house was about 5km from where Shankar and Arjun lived. But on days Arjun was not using the bike (they were neighbours) Shankar often hopped over next door and asked to borrow it.
Arjun usually did not mind lending hiscycle. Shankar was not just his best friend and classmate, but his neighbour as well. But sometimes, he did feel that Shankar was being too free with the borrowing of the bike. It was after all an expensive thing, a gift of the kind that Arjun did not usually get. So he was a little possessive about it and sometimes got irritated that Shankar kept asking for it.
One day, when on his way back from tuition on the cycle, a man on a motorbike suddenly crossed Shankar’s path. Braking abruptly, Shankar flew off the cycle, which rolled a little way ahead and crashed on a roadside marker stone. Shankar was bruised and hurt badly, but no bones were broken thankfully. Butnot so the cycle. The cross bar was twisted and so was a pedal. A tire rim looked damaged as well. His heart sinking, Shankar wheeled the cycle to Arjun’s home. His clothes were torn and scratches and blood marked his arms and legs.
Arjun was shocked to see his friend in this condition. He was even more shocked to see his bike damaged. Tears welled in his eyes. Hismother who was there at home soothed him, but Shankar could see that she was upset as well. She asked him to come in so she could look at his wounds. Shankar declined, apologised, parked the cycle in their garage and went home. He was upset and on the verge of tears.
At home, he had a bath in water into which he added a capful of dettol. His wounds hurt, but they were surface scratches and not very serious. Some parts of his body hurt as well. Both his parents worked – so when they came home at 7pm they were shocked and took him to a hospital nearby for a check up.
Except for the bruises and the scratches, he was fine, pronounced the doctor, who asked him to rest and to be more careful.
That night, Arjun called. He sounded very upset. He asked how Shankar was and then said, “Shankar, my bike has some major repairs. The shop says it will cost Rs.2,500. I hope you will pay for it.
” Shankar was dumbfounded. How would he tell his parents?