Sunday, December 26, 2010

Things I love to see

  1. A couple in love dancing together
  2. People offering to let old people go first in the queue
  3. A baby flashing an instant smile at me
  4. Decorated Christmas trees
  5. People carrying shopping bags, talking to each other, and laughing
  6. Emails from friends that are more like letters
  7. Facebook updates
  8. British people gathering in large numbers to enjoy Community Diwali fireworks
  9. Dark,winding passages in old forts
  10. Wild streams flowing in dense forests

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Kissing a Frog

Based on the fairy tale "Princess and the Frog" in which a princess kisses a frog that turns into a handsome prince upon being kissed. As always, they live happily ever after. Click here if you want to read the whole story. "Kissing a Frog" is my take on the fairy tale.

Kissing a Frog

It was the most beautiful night possible. High up in the sky, a full moon shone brightly and around it twinkled countless little stars. Fireflies fluttered from shrub to shrub and the moonlight reflected off delicate drops of dew. The whole landscape was bathed in a silver light. There was hardly any noise except harmonious sounds of little creatures of the night.

Things were as serene as they could be and the air was cool. Tired birds had just started to fall asleep in their little nests when they were cruelly shaken out of their stupour by the sudden, crashing noise of Princess Greta emerging out of the shrubs.

“I will catch him tonight,” she exclaimed loudly to the wilderness thereby eliminating any chances of taking her intended victim by surprise. Elegance wasn’t her cup of tea. She believed in action. The clumsier the better. Fortunately for her, her victim was rather deaf. With her vision limited by the darkness, she depended upon her keen sense of hearing to move ahead towards the lake, where, upon a dry lotus leaf, sat the shiniest and the smoothest green frog one could ever have imagined.

Freddy the Frog reflected upon his life as he sat on his favorite leaf near the lake. Having had a good dinner, he let out a satisfied croak every few seconds. To Greta, this was the most attractive sound. She had been fascinated by this frog for a really long time now.

Her father, the powerful King of Dimsland, had been apalled by his daughter’s choice when he had first heard about it from the queen.
 “Have you gone crazy, Greta?” he had asked.

“Papa, I love Freddy,” Greta had insisted.

“For God’s sake girl, he is a stupid frog,” the King had replied gesturing wildly at his daughter.

Turning a deaf ear, Greta had argued, “Frog or no frog, Papa. Love is blind.”

“I wouldn’t have worried so much if it was only blind, but in your case it seems to be crazy as well. I will not have a frog for my son-in-law ever.”

“Oh, you will have this frog for your son-in-law, papa. I will see to it,” Greta had replied, stubbornly.

“Princess, think about it. What would you talk to him about? And when time comes for both of the you to ascend the throne, what will he say to my subjects? CROAK? No I will not have it at any cost.”

“Papa, my love will change him. Don’t worry. Only if you could see him through my eyes, you would realize what I am talking about,” Greta had replied poetically.

“Why? What do you see in him?”

“His skin is so smooth that it shines in the moonlight and when he speaks, its like music.”

“Greta, he doesn’t speak for God’s sake. He croaks! And he eats flies!”

“Papa, I know I can change him. You will see that my love will transform him.”

The King had let the craziness be for a while. Greta was a passionate girl but he hoped that the frog would be more sensible. He was sure Greta would also get over this crush pretty soon. Girls her age were known to be driven by their hearts. Little did he know that she planned to go and get that frog the very next day.

So here was Greta, bravely fighting the darkness and pushing aside shrub after shrub to get to the lake where Freddy sat oblivious of the fate that awaited him. The noises that Greta made drove rabbits out of the bushes and birds out of the trees. But they failed to stir the deaf frog. So he sat there lost in his own world until Greta was almost upon him.

When he saw a great shadow loom upon him, he turned to face whatever it was that was blocking the moonlight. But it was too late. With one swooping motion of her arm, Greta grabbed Freddy in her hand and lifted him up in the air. She brought him close to her face. He looked at her and she looked at him. Both looked into each others’ eyes for what seemed like eternity. Then Greta leaned and kissed the frog and again looked at him carefully.

 “Ah, I think I can see little ears sprouting from your head,” she said.

She put Freddy inside her handbag where he sat wide-eyed, shocked, and perplexed but still very much a frog and with no intentions of ever being anything but a frog.

PS: Please forgive the bad drawings...I was so scared of accidently using copyright images that I decided to draw a few myself.