Lesson 38: Gulli-Danda

“I consider gulli danda the king of all sports.
Even now, whenever I see children playing gulli-danda, I have a great desire to join them.
You don’t need a lawn, a court, a net, or any other expensive equipment.
Just climb a tree, cut a branch, make a gulli, and even if there are only two of you, you can start playing.
As a child, I spent many happy hours playing this game.
Among my fellow players was a boy named Gaya.
He was a tall, thin fellow with the long, supple fingers of a monkey, and with a monkey’s nimbleness and uncertain temper.
Whatever the shape of the gulli, he would pounce on it the way a lizard pounces on an insect.”

A) Vocabulary: Please make your own sentences with the following words:

Lawn – an area of short, smooth grass.
Court – a space for certain games, like tennis.
Expensive Equipment – costly tools or machinery for a particular type of work or sport.
Supple – able to bend and stretch easily.
Nimble – quick and light in movement.
Pounce – to jump suddenly or attack.
Lizard – a small reptile that has a long body, four short legs, a long tail and thick skin.

B) Discussion points:

  1. What is your favourite sport?
  2. Do you get to play it in your neighbourhood?
  3. Describe the physical appearance of any two friends who play with you.
  4. Do you know anyone who likes to play gulli-danda?
  5. These are some sports that are not very popular in India:
    a) Skiing. b) Scuba-diving. c) Surfing. d) Ice-hockey

Please research, and write a few lines about any two of them.

(Adapted from ‘Gulli-Danda’ by Premchand)