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Winter 2010

First Place in Kahani's Fifth Annual Writing Contest

The Very Plain Kite 
By Avni Pandya Singh, 9

Little Anjali lived with her uncle Ranjeev in an Indian village called Gulabjamunpur. Every night Ranjeev would tell Anjali a story about him as a boy and his kite. The night before Ranjeev’s birthday, Anjali stayed awake for a long time thinking about where she could get a kite for him. It would be hard to buy one because they were poor and had no other family member to help them.

The next morning, Anjali was going on a field trip to the nearby castle. When she got there, she saw shiny jewels and mirrors all around her. But one thing that was most un-beautiful was a kite that was just plain white with brown stains on it. It was sitting on the stairs leading up to the castle door. She thought it was trash, so she took it and put it in her backpack.

That night, after dinner, Anjali said, “I have two presents for you, Uncle.”

Ranjeev Uncle said, “What are they?”

She left and came back with a tray of squishy, syrupy gulab jamuns. “Oh, my gosh, Anjali! Those look so good! Thank you!”

Anjali said, “There’s more.” She handed her uncle the kite.

His eyes got big and filled with tears. “We will go to the park tomorrow and fly our kite.”

The next day Anjali and Ranjeev Uncle were walking with their kite when they stumbled upon a kite festival. Nobody knew who was hosting it. It was strange that there was a kite festival on a non-windy day. When it was time to fly the kites, none of the kites flew except theirs. “Wow, are you just a good kite flier, or is this kite magical?!” asked Anjali.

That’s when the king and queen showed up, and they looked “mangry” (half mad, half angry). “You stole our kite! You’re under arrest!” shouted the king.

Anjali and Ranjeev were stunned.

“This is a magical kite that can fly without wind. We held this kite festival because we thought that the thief with the valuable kite would come and we would find him! And we did!” exclaimed the queen.

Anjali cried and told the king and queen everything. She said, “I thought the kite was trash because it was lying on the castle stairs and was so dirty.”

The queen explained that the guard that had been guarding the kite had gone to get a drink and left the kite on the stairs when Anjali’s class was leaving the castle. She told Anjali, “Don’t take things from places even if they look like trash.”

Anjali begged, “I am sorry! Please don’t punish us! We’re poor and have no other family.”

The king and queen forgave Anjali. Instead of punishment, they gave Ranjeev Uncle the job to make the kite pretty again.

Three months later, Ranjeev Uncle presented the beautiful kite to the king and queen. And guess what Ranjeev painted on the kite? White, orange, and green gulab jamuns! The king and queen loved it.

Contest Info