Yesterday, on her way to school, Mary saw Juma sitting under a tree. He looked very unhappy. “What’s the matter, Juma”she said. Why are you sitting here? It’s eight o’clock. You’ll be late for school. Juma said, “I’m not going to school today”.
“Why?” asked Mary. Are you ill?” “No”, said Juma, I’m afraid to go to school. I’ve lost all my books and I won’t be able to do the writing lesson. The teacher will be very angry.”
Juma was so unhappy that he started to cry. Mary sat down next to him and said, don’t cry, Juma.You must not worry. I’m sure you’ll find your books soon. I don’t want to go to school either. Let’s go to the village instead.
Juma agreed, and so they both started to walk to the village. They walked and walked. The village was so far away that Juma went into the forest and cut two walking-sticks for himself and Mary.
Then it would be easier to walk to the village. After they had been walking for half an hour, Mary stopped and said to Juma, I’m so tired that I can’t walk any more. I must rest for few minutes.
“The two children sat down in the shade of a big tree.”
Suddenly Juma said, Look Mary! Look under that bush! Mary looked and saw something shiny. She went over to the bush and shouted, come here, Juma! I’ve found ten -shilling pieces! Now we’ll have to spend some money.
We can buy food in the village. I’m glad we didn’t go to school”. Both Mary and Juma were happy to have ten shillings. They were so eager to spend the money that they ran to the village.
When they got there, Juma said, this is so much money that I don’t know how to spend it. What shall we buy first? Mary said, “I’m hungry. I want some sweets, please.
“The man gave Juma the sweets. Then, Mary said, and some biscuits too, please.”
The man gave Mary the biscuits and, “said, the sweets and the biscuits cost three shillings, altogether.”
Juma gave him the money. Then they went outside and began to eat.” We have seven shillings more,” said Juma.What shall we do?”
“Let’s buy some milk and sweet bananas,” said Mary. They went into another shop and bought some milk and sweet bananas.
Juma gave the shop-keeper three shillings. Then they went to the market and bought some roasted maize and some oranges. They paid the man at the market two shillings.
They bought so much food that they could hardly carry all of it.
Juma said, “Let’s sit in the shade and eat our food. My feet hurt and I’m too tired to walk home.” They found some trees and sat down. First they ate the sweets.
Then they ate the bananas and the oranges. Then they ate the maize and biscuits. Finally they drank all the milk. When they had finished, Mary looked at the sun.
“It’s late” she said, “It will be dark soon. But I’ve eaten so much food and I can’t stand up”. Then Juma said, I’m sick. I’ve eaten so much food that my stomach hurts.
Just then they heard a car. It was their teacher’s car. When the teacher saw Juma and Mary he stopped. He got out of the car and said, well, well. You have been having a picnic. You both look very sick. Come with me. I’ll take you home in my car”.
Both Mary and Juma knew that the teacher was angry. They got into the car. They knew that they were very foolish to eat so much food. They were afraid that their teacher would punish them. He did not speak to the children until they reached Juma’s house.
Juma and Mary got out of the car. Their teacher said, “both of you must see me tomorrow morning. I will decide on your punishment then.”
Then he said to Juma, “Do you know that you left all your books on the floor in the back of the classroom? You must be more careful. Those books cost a lot of money.”
After the teacher had left, Mary said to Juma, “Today was a very bad day. We were very foolish and now we will be punished.” Juma said, “But we still have two shillings”.
He put his hand into his pocket. He looked very unhappy. What’s the matter? Said Mary. Juma said, there’s a hole in my pocket. I’ve lost the money.”