The best vacations ever!!!
There is nothing quite as amazing as waking up early in the day when there is no reason to. Well into the vacation, Anand was no stranger to this feeling and neither were the rest of his buddies. So, it was not surprising for their mothers to already find their children gone by the time the mothers woke up for the milkman.
The first day, the group decided to go to the beach. It was always a grand venture there with very few people about. The friends loved to dig deep into the sand. Usually, Anshu and Anand dug one hole and Sid and Rohan dug another some distance away. They dug in the soft sand till they hit water and later connected both the projects through a meticulously carved system of underground tunnels. This venture took several hours but they didn’t notice the time nor the hunger or thirst that usually accompanies such undertakings in the mid-morning sun.
The small sand crabs that usually make their homes burrowing in the soft soil near the water were the unwitting accomplice to the friends digging near their home. Many a times these little creatures even found their way into the giggling hands of Sid or Rohan who let them gently back into their puddle.
At other times Anand, Anshu, Rohan and Sid used to wait patiently for the fisherman’s boats to come in very early in the morning and watch them sort out their catch in shallow water or on the beach just as the tide ends. They watched as fishermen tossed fish that can’t be eaten back into the water. The most exotic fish that they saw was the puffer fish.
“If a puffer fish is in danger, it absorbs air and swells up to double its size and the skin becomes all prickly. That way other fish can’t eat them” Rohan said knowledgeably as the group lined up and watched the fisherman’s ritual.
“But why are they throwing the fish back”? Anshu asked
“Because it is supposed to be poisonous”
“I read somewhere that they eat this fish in Japan” Sid added
“…” Rohan started, but decided against arguing so early in the morning, especially when Sid was probably right, and simply said “maybe they cook it differently”
“Hmmmm…” the group chorused. No one had taken their eyes off the fisherman’s boats throughout the conversation, lest they miss something unmissable.
“Do you remember the snake they tossed over the boat last year?” Anand said
“Oh those are the most dangerous. I read that there is no medicine for a sea snake bite. If it bites…finished”. Rohan was clearly a marine biologist in the making.
“Good it didn’t bite us then” Sid added.
“Hmmmm…”, the group chorused, eyes still locked on to the little boat.
“Hey…shall should we go fishing too?!” Anand piped up
“Yes!” Sid and Rohan shouted in unison
“But we need boats, we won’t get anything near the shore…and we need fishing rods…our parents will never allow us” Anshu pointed out factually bringing the Group back to reality.
As the Group stood silent in a pensive mood fantasizing about the good life the fishermen had, Sid suddenly came up with an ingenious alternative.
“Oye, we can go fishing in the creek next to our house! It’s not really shallow but we can catch fish from the shore quite easily, I’ve seen tiny ones there”
“Must be tadpoles” Rohan added, affecting a little payback for the puffer fish snub earlier.
“No..no…they are fish…you think I can’t tell the difference…”
“Guys…calm down” Anand interceded. “Let’s go and have a look today after lunch and we can see what they are. Will be a fun afternoon either way!”
“Lets!” Anshu exclaimed and even Sid and Rohan called a truce as the group started back.
Click here for chapter 1
Click here for chapter 1