Hamid thinks that the toys are only a waste of money - they are made of clay and will be shattered if they drop to the
ground. Yet, he looks at them with longing eyes, and craves to take them in his hands if only for a moment. He
involuntarily stretches his hands to take them. But boys are not of a sacrificing nature, especially when they are
obsessed by a new hobby. Hamid's wish to take the toys in his own hands remained unfulfilled.
It is time for the sweets now. Some of them bought "revadis", some others got themselves "gulab jamun" while others
chose to buy "halwa". All of them are enjoying the delicious sweets. But Hamid stands apart. The wretched boy does have
three paise; why does he not buy something? Instead, he is watching the other boys with imploring eyes.
Mohsin says, "Hamid, take a little revadi. They have such a delightful smell."
Hamid felt suspicious, this was only a cruel joke. Mohsin was not so generous. Yet, he went up to Mohsin. Mohsin
drew out a large piece of revadi from the packet and held it before Hamid. The little boy extends his hand to take it,
but Mohsin immediately transfers the revadi into his own mouth. This delights Mahmood, Nooray and Sammi who clap their
hands in glee and laugh at Hamid. Hamid slinks away.
Mohsin: Okay, this time I will surely give. Come and take it.
Hamid: Keep your revadi to yourself. Don't I have money?
Sammi: You have only three paise. What can you buy with three paise?
Mahmood: Come and take a gulab jamun from me, Hamid. Mohsin is a rogue.
Hamid: What is so good about sweets! The books say that sweets are bad for health.
Mohsin: But deep in your heart, you are craving to eat the sweets. Why don't you buy with your own money?
Mahmood: He is sly. He will buy sweets when we run out of money, just to tease us.
Next to the sweet shops were shops selling household goods and imitation jewellery. These shops held no attraction
for the boys, and they moved ahead. Hamid stood outside the shop selling household goods. He could see some tongs. He
remembered that his grandmother did not have tongs; she almost always burnt her fingers while removing "rotis (flat
bread)" from the "tawa (hot plate)". His grandmother will be very happy if she gets a pair of tongs; she will not
burn her fingers. The tongs will be a very useful thing to have in the house. What use are toys; they are just a waste
of money. They keep you happy only for a short while; then, no one looks at them at all. The toys are likely to break
even before the boys reach home. A pair of tongs, on the other hand, is very useful - you can easily remove the "rotis"
from the "tawa", the "rotis" can be baked over the fire, and if someone comes for a burning coal to make fire, you can
easily remove one with the tongs. Poor grandmother has hardly any time to go to the market to buy a pair of tongs; she
does not even have the money to buy them. She burns her fingers every day.
Hamid's companions went ahead, and were now enjoying a glass of lemonade at the fruit juice shop. All of them are
so greedy; they bought so much sweets but did not give me even a little share. They tell me to play with them, and do
their work. If somebody tells me to do anything now, I will refuse. Let them eat sweets; they will have mouth and
tongue sores. Now, they will steal money from home to buy sweets and will be punished by their parents. Books don't
lie. All these things are written in the books. Why should I spoil my tongue? When granny sees me coming with the pair
of tongs, she will come running to me and bless me a thousand times. Granny will show the tongs to the women in the
neighbourhood. The whole village will talk about me. Hamid has brought a pair of tongs. He is such a nice boy! Who will
bless these boys for buying toys? The blessings of the elders are immediately heard by God. Mohsin and Mahmood snub me
because I have no money. I will also ignore them. Let them play with toys and eat sweets, I don't want to play with
their toys. Why should I tolerate anybody's snide remarks? I may be poor, but I do not beg from others. Abbajaan (father)
will come back some day, and so will Amma (mother). Then I will ask the boys how many toys they want. I will give
a basketful of toys to each of them to make them realise the worth of true friendship. Friendship is not about buying
a paise worth of revadis and eating them while teasing me. All of them will mock me for buying a pair of tongs. Let
them laugh; I don't care.