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Chapter 1: The Forest Friend

One sunny day, in a jungle, Chetu was on his way to gather apples. He didn’t want to climb the tall trees, and so he was looking for an easy way to satiate his hunger.

On going past a few trees, he came upon a house, where he saw a bowl of the most beautiful apples. He took two in each hand and just as he was running back into the forest, a girl, no taller than himself came in front of him.

Chetu looked down in guilt for trying to steal and he apologized to the girl. The girl seemed quite bothered, but she forgave. Rita, the girl, was quite astonished to see such a clever and friendly monkey. Together, they went into the jungle, talking to each other about their hobbies and whereabouts.

Rita was a busy school girl. Her schedule was packed with homework and assignments and she would barely have the time to play. Chetu on the other hand was free to his will. He could wander off anywhere he liked, munch on as many fruits as he liked and would still have no one scold him.

It then dawned on Chetu how the human world was very different from the world he knew. The humans had all the comfort, they had food on the table and houses to sleep in. But what got Chetu confused was he never saw them happy, or smiling. They seemed depressed, and always engaged in materialistic things.

In his world, regardless of misery or mirth, everyone always wore a bright smile on their faces. Everyone was calm and civil.

Chetu thought about all these things whilst walking alongside Rita. Both of them walked and talked until they arrived at a crossroads in the jungle.


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