I twirled in my little red tulle dress and pretty ballerina shoes. The bow in my hair sparkled in the moonlight. "Common baby it's time to leave." There came my mom's sound. Excited I ran towards her and occupied a place on her waist. The fairy lights and stars along the streets bought Christmas early that year. "Jo, put your head inside." Pappa shouted at me as I peeped outside the window of the car. Just an hour ride and we reached our destination. I looked up as we entered. The big banner said "BOUN NATALE FEST". I was quite good at reading because my grandmom used to make me read a lot. I had a huge collection of fairy tales at home which I was really proud of. Fairy lights of different colours and stars were hung above me. I looked in awe at the little girls dressed up as angels. Not mentioning the fact that I believed they were real angels. Santas roamed around with big bundle of gifts. My little eyes were then big and round. But then I wanted to walk around free. I felt like running around. Then came a good looking middle aged man with a whole lot of balloons. There were shining balloons, character balloons, luminous balloons and many other balloons. Though they were tied in a strong they tried to touch the sky. I felt bad for the balloons. They might want to be free just like I did. Suddenly a crazy thought hit my little mind. I started crying and yelling that I wanted those balloons. My pappa who is so considerate took me to the man and bought the whole bunch of balloons. He gave me them and in a fraction of second I released my palms and set the balloons free. They flew in the sky like little colourful dots. The man opened his mouth in full circle and a lot of people gathered around me. In the mayhem mom placed me down. The next moment I disappeared into the crowd. I ran and danced along with the little angels. My hand waved up in the sky. I turned back. No one is coming after me. No one is even noticing me. I was barely as tall as others' knees. 'Well I am in a safe position' thought my dumb mind. I ran,ran and ran. Finally I stood at a point where the road split into two. My head tossed a bit thinking where should I turn to. Then I heard the jingling sounds from my left. It drew my body and soul to the left. I moved dragging my legs. By then my legs began to hurt. My eyes captured a very beautiful view then. Three huge golden jingle bells laid near a broken reindeer carriage. The bells shone in moonlight.the red ribbon around the bells were already loosened. I was so tired that I laid to sleep in the reindeer carriage. The cushions was so soft. I had a good night's sleep. Reindeers carried me up above the clouds. I wore Santa's clothes. A big bundle of gifts rested beside me. I knocked at every doorsteps on my way and placed the gifts near Christmas trees decorated with lovely stars and lights. And then suddenly a big Santa chased me. He may have known that I stole his vehicle and clothes. In a flash he struck me and my carriage broke into pieces. I fell deep down and down and down. When I opened my eyes I was still inside the broken carriage near the jingle bells. It was so cold. My socks and muffler couldn't protect me from the shrill cool wind. I slowly got up and moved outside. I saw a little house on the opposite lane. There were no other homes. I ran there and knocked at the door shivering. An old grandma came outside. She asked me what I was doing there. I couldn't say anything but I teared up. The grandma took me inside and wrapped me in a blanket and sat me kn her cozy armchair. She gave me a hot soop. It was a bit spicy yet very tasty. I drank the whole bowl with a boiled egg and banana. K hadn't eaten anything since yesterday evening. Grandma asked me if I had gone missing during yesterday's fest. Only then did I realise that I was actually missing. I had read about kids who went missing in some fairytales. I felt happy that I actually went missing one day. Grandma was quite surprised seeing me smirking. She asked me about my hometown and parents. My pappa had taught me well about all such things that I answered them well. She locked me inside the home and asked to stay inside like a good girl. She went out promising to buy chocolates for me. I walked around her home. It was a little home yet very neatly maintained. The whole wall had her paintings and embroidered frames. A bowl near her armchair was full of threads, yarns and needles. Near that laid a cute little pink sweater. It's sleeve was yet to be knitted. I went to the kitchen and found a jar full of pistas. I loved them and so I took a little chair and climbed up to get the jar but unfortunately it fell down and broke into pieces. I carefully moved away without stepping on the broken glass pieces. Then I switched in the television and watched Tom and Jerry. Suddenly the door cracked open. I saw grandma coming in. I ran to her and gave me chocolates. While I was eating the chocolates I heard a familiar cry. It was my mom. Pappa and mom came in suddenly. I gave an ear to ear smile. They came and hugged me. I got kisses all over my face which I really didn't like. Back then I never realised the reason for their anxiety and crying. But now I know what they would have felt. Now, whenever I hear jingle bells and shining beautiful things I think twice before going towards them. That is the most precious lesson my parents taught me. JEEVA MINU ST TERESAS COLLEGE ERNAKULAM
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