“‘Can I have an elephant?’ Ethan asked his mom in the living room. ‘Because I want to ride on it, so I can transport easily while having fun, and since I don’t really have any friends, Mom.'”
“Can I have an elephant?” Ethan asked his mom in the living room. “Because I want to ride on it, so I can transport easily while having fun, and since I don’t really have any friends, Mom.”
She opened her eyes widely and said, “No way! It’s way too big!”
Ethan said, “I will take care of it and make a big house outside for it.”
His mom said, “Okay, but you are buying the elephant. It is 50 rand.”
But Ethan realized and said, “Oh no! I only have 20 rand that I saved up from previous chores I did.”
So Ethan decided to do chores for his neighbors like cleaning, doing their laundry, and dusting. He felt okay with doing chores because he did chores for his mom and dad. In his opinion, it was not much of a challenge for him.
However, the real challenge was finding a job due to the way he looked. He looked Christian because he was light-skinned, but he was actually Hindu. His mom, dad, four-year-old brother named John, and 23-year-old sister named Camelia, who lived separately from them, all had light skin. He thought it made sense for people to think they were Christian because they had Christian names. There were a lot of Hindus in his South African village, and they thought Ethan’s family shouldn’t be there because they thought he was Christian.
He got a job by researching on the internet, and he saw a person named Joe, who needed help. Ethan went to a different part of his village that was Christian, and he worked for Joe. Joe was Hindu in a Christian part of the village!
“Can I have a job?” Ethan asked Joe.
“Okay, I need help with cleaning, dusting, etc.” said Joe.
Ethan felt like all the chores were fun. He earned five rand for each hour. He decided to work one hour everyday for a week except Sunday, because he did not want to work so long, so he would not get tired. He got 50 rand but had no idea where to buy the elephant. So he asked a young girl on 24th street.
She said, “I don’t know,” so then he asked some teens.
They said, “Um… We do not know.”
Then he asked an adult, and he said, “No one seems to know because they never wanted an elephant as a pet, but I do because I used to have an elephant. But sadly, it passed away. The pet store is five streets east.”
“Thank you!” responded Ethan, becoming friends with the man.
Then he went to the pet store. There were so many elephants at the shop. He wasn’t sure which one to choose. All of the elephants were really loud. But one of them was quiet, had a short trunk, short legs, and was light. He was a two-year-old elephant.
Ethan started to like that elephant because it was cute, since it was small and young. He eventually bought him. Ethan decided to name his elephant Sanav, meaning sun in Hindi, because it was always so hot in South Africa, and that caused the elephant to be really really hot.
Ethan developed a lot of love for him, so now he had a fear of it dying. This was why he took a lot of care of it. He used it for transportation but also loved it as a pet. With the help of Bob, the adult he met asking for the directions to the pet store, they built a little red house for the elephant to live in and feel comfortable. (Red happened to be Ethan’s favorite color.)
Whenever the elephant felt hungry, he went, “ UHHHRRRRUUHHHH,” and Ethan fed him peanuts.
The villagers felt jealous of Ethan’s elephant because they had to walk while Ethan got a ride from his pet elephant. But they thought it was too much work to take care of an elephant. It made Ethan feel sorry, so he tried to convince the villagers to get elephants and he offered to help them take care of their elephants. They felt happy that he was trying to help, and they began to like him.
Not only did he use his elephant for transportation but also as a pet to have fun with. He had fun with Sanav and his little brother. They played in the sand, which there was plenty of in South Africa, since it was something he loved to do. Now Ethan had a friend to do it with.