Hathi ka Awaj

I was entertaining some children at a party in India. I was making animal noises for them, and they were guessing what they were. Okay, I meant to do a sheep – of course they knew it was a goat, but never mind. Then they started suggesting animals for me, which was much harder, especially since I don’t even know what noise half of the animals make. But one little girl said, “Hathi! Hathi ka awaj kijiye!” (Elephant! Do an elephant’s noise!)

Well, I do know what noise elephants make. It’s very hard on the vocal chords, but I was young and foolish, and I strained my voice and I did it. And the effort obviously made me shift energetically on my chair, which broke.

Great mirth all around the room. After that I was always known in that village as “Bada Hathi” (the big elephant). (I’m quite a little chap really, but so are most of the folks in that village, especially the kids.)