In what way is the forest pool different from the one which Ranji knew in the Rajputana desert?
The water of the forest pool is cold, clean and inviting. But the water of the pool in Rajputana is sticky and muddy. Buffaloes roll about and women wash clothes in it.
The other boy asked Ranji to explain himself.
(i) What did he expect Ranji to say?
(ii) Was he, in your opinion, right or wrong to ask this question?
(i) The other boy expected Ranji to say sorry and ask for his pardon.
(ii) He was wrong to ask this question because the pool was a gift of nature. It was not his individual property and anyone could swim in it.
Between Ranji and the other boy, who is trying to start a quarrel? Give a reason for your answer.
It is the other boy who is trying to start a quarrel. He was the first one to adopt a violent attitude and slap Ranji hard.
''Then we will have to continue the fight,''said the other.
(i) What made him say that?
(ii) Did the fight continue? If not, why not ?
(i) There was no result of the fight on the first day and Ranji didn't accept defeat. And, neither of them was ready to give in. This made the other boy say the given words.
(ii) No, the fight did not continue because they became friends.
What is it that Ranji finds difficult to explain at home?
It is the cuts and bruises on his face, leg and arms that Ranji finds difficult to explain at home.
Ranji sees his adversary in the bazaar.
(i) What does he wish to do ?
(ii) What does he actually do, and why?
(i) First Ranji wishes to turn away and look the other side. Then, he thinks of throwing the lemonade bottle on his enemy.
(ii) Actually he stays where he is and looks angrily at him because he is upset with the day's events and with the thought of what will happen the next day.
Ranji is not at all eager for a second fight. Why does he go back to pool then?
Not going to the pool would be like accepting defeat. So Ranji decides to go to the pool in spite of the fact that he isn't at all eager for it.
Who was the better swimmer? How do you know it?
Ranji was the better swimmer because he swam across the whole length of the pool effortlessly. Later in the story, Ranji also teaches Suraj how to swim.
What surprises the warrior?
Ranji's diving straight into the water, cutting it like a knife and coming to the other side of the pool surprises the warrior.
Now that they are at the pool, why don't they continue the fight?
Now, there is a bond of love and friendship between them. So they forget their enmity and don't continue the fight.
Ranji's superiority over the other boy is obvious in the following:
physical strength, good diving, his being a fighter, sense of humour, swimming under water, making a good point, willingness to help. Underline the relevant phrases.
good diving, sense of humour, swimming under water, willingness to help, his being a fighter
What, according to you, makes the two adversaries turn into good friends in a matter of minutes? Explain it as you have understood it.
Willingness to learn and teach makes the two adversaries turn into good friends. Suraj is willing to learn from Ranji how to swim under water and is ready to make Ranji a pehelwan in turn.
Is fighting the only way of resolving differences of opinion? What else can be done to reach a mutually acceptable settlement?
No, fighting is not the only way of resolving differences of opinion. This can be done in a friendly way through mutual talks and accepting the other's point of view while keeping yours as equally important.
Have you ever been in a serious fight only to realise later that it was unnecessary and futile? Share your experience/views with others frankly and honestly.
Yes, I have been. I fought with my neighbour over a blocked drain in front of our houses. We indulged a long and noisy quarrel. In the meantime, the dirty water in the drain overflowed and dirtied the whole street. We realised our mistake. We should have undone the blockage instead of fighting.
Why do some of us find it necessary to prove that we are better than others? Will you be amused or annoyed to read the following sign at the back of the car in front of you? I may be going slow but I am ahead of you.
Sometimes we don't want to accept defeat under any circumstances. We do this to satisfy our ego. I shall be amused to read such a sign at the back of a car but I will not feel annoyed as I am against fast driving.