In Arabian Nights by Tahir Shah

In Arabian Nights by Tahir Shah

Author:Tahir Shah [Tahir Shah]
Language: eng
Format: epub
Tags: nepalifiction, TPB, travel humor, travel literature
ISBN: 9781407040523
Publisher: Transworld
Published: 0101-01-01T00:00:00+00:00

Ariane's birthday was bright pink from beginning to end. An army of little girls trooped into the house, all dressed in pink tutus, waving pink magic wands. They gorged themselves on pink jelly, pink Barbie cake and fluorescent pink meringue.

When the little girls had raced away, I took Ariane up for her bath. She put on her pink pyjamas, climbed into bed and asked me to read her a story.

'Shall I get a book from the shelf, Baba?' she asked.

'As it's your birthday, we will have a special tale tonight,' I said.

Ariane beamed up at me, her eyes shimmering like stars. I pulled out a package from under her bed. She tore away the pink wrapping paper and stared at the wooden box. The marquetry letters caught the light.

'Baba, it's so beautiful,' she said. 'It's a princess's box.'

'Yes, it is beautiful,' I replied, 'but always remember that it is a box and a box is just a box. It has one job, to keep something very special very safe.'

'Can I open it?'

I nodded. 'Of course, it's yours.'

Ariane's miniature fingers pulled back the lid. She fished out the papers.

'What is this, Baba?' she asked.

'It's a piece of treasure,' I explained, 'something so precious, so valuable, that it must always be kept safe. One day you will understand the value, but now you can lie back and let it enter your dreams.

I read the 'Tale of Melon City'.

Ariane kissed me on the cheek and put the story back in its box.

'I will keep it very safe,' she said.

I turned off the light. As I did so, I felt a tinge of great satisfaction.

The baton was at last being passed on.


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