When Friends are Forever

George and Elliana loved playing in the Indian garden. It was like a jungle. They would watch the mongooses at play at the bottom of the garden, having a vantage point from the dining room at breakfast which opened out to the garden. There in the far back the mongooses would jump and play, with the sun filtering in through the leaves on the trees at the bottom of the garden. It was breakfast entertainment!

They would hear the squirrels cry their warning signs at the sight of mysterious movements in the trees, probably lauding the warning of snakes. They would pick buckets of limes from the lime trees for their great-grandmother who would make spicy lime pickle, limeade and other wonderful dishes. But most of all, they loved meeting their great-grandparents friends and making friends of their own. It was the holiday season, and friends would stop by to visit, or they would go out to visit friends. Sometimes children would arrive with the visitors and there would be playmates for George and Elliana. The children would run off and play together in the big old house. There were many discoveries to be made within its walls. There were old toys and games from their parents and grandparents era, and even their great-grandparents and great-great-grandparents. There was an old teddy bear of their grandmother’s, missing an eye. All the children had fun playing with these “ancient” treasures (albeit broken toys).
One evening, after dinner, their great-grandmother took George on a walk. She was going to tutor an evening class for children and George was going to accompany her. George was excited. He hopped and skipped along beside his great-grandmother. As they got near the campus, they saw many bright-eyed children. The sign on the gate read, “SOS Village”. George went happily inside with his great-grandmother. Class began in one of the rooms on the campus. Great-grandmother tutored the children as they sat in their seats in a classroom. The children would raise their hands eagerly to answer a question. Then great-grandmother gave them a written assignment. As the children wrote, George would hold a rubber (an eraser) ready. The children would raise their hands when they needed a rubber and call out, “George! George!” and George would happily run over, hand them the rubber and chat happily. The time passed by quickly with the enjoyment they all had together, and George made some new friends. As George and his great-grandmother were getting ready to leave, he and his newfound friends made promises to come over and play. It was a promise they would keep over many years!


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