Kamran and Mapa
First Travel Book

Chapter 3 ~ Tiki the Dolphin

Kamran and Mapa awoke from another night in the Terai. They walked down to the water and met their crocodile friend and many others. Everyone was taking a bath. They splashed and laughed together in the water. The animals and children gathered on the river-bank to feel the morning sun.

The crocodile asked, "Kamran, can you tell us what is was like to travel across the ocean? What kind of animals did you find? Who did you meet?"

Kamran looked at Mapa and smiled, "Just last night we thought about telling you of our meeting with a very beautiful and clever dolphin. Would you like to hear about Tiki?"

"Yeah!" everyone shouted.

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Kamran began…

I remember one morning, we awoke in our raft and were very hungry. We had finished the last of our peanut butter and jelly for dinner the night before. We did not know that we were being watched.

Tiki spotted our raft and was watching us very closely. He had never seen an elephant or a kangaroo in all of his life. Since ocean animals have no ears, he thought we looked very funny. He did not know what kind of animals we were.

He wondered where we were from, what we were doing and where we going? Then, he decided he would introduce himself by showing us what he could do.

First, he made a big jump out of the water. We smiled and laughed. He began to bump and rock our boat. After awhile, he noticed us changing color. We both turned green.

Tiki understood his mistake. He had heard about seasickness in animals that were not born in the water. He stopped rocking our boat and watched as Mapa and I held our stomachs. He figured we must be hungry so he dived into the water to gather some fish.

Mapa and I were feeling better when he returned. We took the fish and ate them quickly. Then, we tried to catch fish. Mapa stuck her nose in the water and I held on to her tail. She ran out of air before she could catch one fish.

Tiki explained that Mapa’s eyes became so large underwater, that all of the fish nearby became frightened. We looked around and saw that many had jumped from the water and landed in our raft.

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Mapa continued the story...

Kamran wanted to try his luck. He jumped into the water, but his pouch filled with water and he began to sink. He scrambled back to the raft and held on. I gave him my trunk to help him back into the raft. Tiki laughed and laughed and then waved good-bye to us saying he felt we would all be great friends.

After a couple of days, Kamran and I had trouble. Our raft had sprung a leak and started to fill with water. Kamran put his finger in the hole and bailed with one hand. This did not help. Water kept pouring in.

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Kamran added...

I grabbed Mapa’s tail and tried to plug the hole. Mapa used her nose to bail water. She blew it over the side of the raft. Still, the water kept coming. Our raft was sinking. I stopped bailing and tried to stick my head above the water for a breath.

Just then, we saw an old sea turtle. She had watched us from below the water. "Would you two please stop jumping around so much?" she asked. "I’m old and all this laughing is making me tired. I’ve never seen and elephant and a dinosaur work so beautifully together."

The turtle had decided that I was a dinosaur. She had never seen a kangaroo before! Even though I was small, I looked just like a dinosaur to her.

"I will help you," she told us. She dived to gather seaweed from the bottom of the ocean. When she returned to the raft, she was chewing the seaweed into a paste. She spat it into the hole of our raft and stopped the leak.

Mapa said, "Thank you. You helped us just in time. But, why do you think my friend is a dinosaur?"

"Long ago on the planet lived dinosaurs," she said. "Why doesn’t your friend know he’s a dinosaur? Does he know who he is? Only his face is a little different than most dinosaurs."

I think the turtle’s eyes were not very good. She was certain I must be a dinosaur. "The dinosaurs have many eggs deep in the ocean and sometimes one breaks open," she said. "I thought you were just a baby."

—————

Kamran stuck out his chest and smiled, so Mapa continued...

As the turtle spoke about dinosaurs, Tiki joined us and asked what we were talking about. The turtle explained how funny we were while we tried to fix our raft. When she started to explain about Kamran being a dinosaur, Tiki laughed.

"Don’t worry, this is a kangaroo," Tiki said. "He has a pouch for luggage, skin with fur and a different face. He only looks like a dinosaur when he’s underwater. Now, there are no dinosaurs to see living on Earth. All of the dinosaurs are keeping their eggs deep in the ocean. They are waiting for a time when they may hatch and grow up."

"How do you know so much about dinosaurs?" I asked.

"It’s my job," he answered. "I watch after the dinosaur eggs that are deep, deep in the ocean. My other dolphin friends and I protect these eggs. We keep them in a safe place until it is time for them to hatch."

Kamran asked the next question. "Why are you protecting the eggs and how do you help?"

"I feel when Earth may shake from earthquakes or volcanic eruptions," Tiki told us. "At those times, I protect the eggs from breaking. I make sure the eggs do not touch each other and crack." We all listened very closely to Tiki speak about his serious duty.

This was very wonderful to me. I have never thought about new life coming from the ocean. I think it will be fun when the eggs are ready to hatch and we will have new friends to play with. I would love to speak with a dinosaur.

—————

The animals listened to Kamran and Mapa’s whole story of Tiki, the sea turtle and the dinosaurs. It was late and the children and animals had gathered around a fire to listen to the tale. In their excitement, they could not sleep. They thought of meeting and playing with new friends in the future.

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Prologue, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21
Songs: Sunshine Song & Love for Mother Earth


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