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1+1=Yellow

Shraddha Gulati

It was a beautiful evening with a mesmerizing sunset in the sky. I went to a park that day to take a walk as I was bored and alone at home. There were birds chirping in the trees, dogs walking about and kids playing with their friends. It was one of those beautiful days after many monotonous days that seemed to have a little more magic.
I made a very good friend that evening. His name is Peter and we have been friends ever since. Peter is unlike other people I know of; he has a unique perspective towards life and our world. That evening, we talked about the most random things in this world. Even today when Peter visits sometimes, we talk about similar things like how kids are taught about mathematics and algebra in schools these days and they learn that 1+1=2, how we come to identify various colours like red, blue, green and a million other ones by how they appear to us. But Peter always tells me that there is more to this world than we have seen.
One day, I told him about the books that I had just purchased and he told me that when I leave my room and no one is looking, the books kept in my bookshelves talk to each other. Mostly they would recite the words written inside and sometimes it gets pretty noisy. But they know when to stop and that is why I never hear anything. I do not like noisy places anyways. I also came to know that when I leave my room to use the bathroom, my bed makes a round trip to the moon. I have never seen my bed missing because he is a quick runner and returns before I do every time. I hope that one day, I catch him missing. He is going to get an earful! Peter also told me one day that we have got up and down all wrong. We are all living upside down. In reality, down is when we go up and up is when we go down. Since that day, I have been confused about all the directions in my head. I feel like I am always going the wrong way.
One day, Peter and I were talking about candies. We both love candies. Peter told me that if I were to wake up tomorrow as someone else, say my Mom, lemons would taste sweet. I would still call it sour because then I would be my Mom. No wonder she loves lemons! She does not like candies though. If I woke up as my Father, chocolates would taste bitter and blueberries would taste salty. I wonder what that would be like and whether I would still eat as many chocolates as I eat now. Did you also know that the colour that appears red to me, appears blue to Peter? That means that the sky is red for him and apples are apples are blue for me. But the funny thing is that yellow is the same for both of us. It’s also my favourite colour.
Peter also told me that infants talk to goblins and that we can’t see them. The goblins come to visit the children because they are bored and always want to play. Peter told me that goblins are nicer than we think and that they love children. When children grow up, the goblins stop visiting because they don’t like adults. They think adults are delusional and imagine things that don’t exist. They also think that adults are boring.
“Do you believe in fairy tales, Peter”, I asked him one night. “I don’t believe in reality”, he replied. “You shouldn’t either”, he continued. He keeps telling me that fairies and unicorns are real but I haven’t met any yet. He tells me that one day I will meet them, just like I met an elf, on that magical day while sitting alone in the park. Peter comes from a family of elves who visit people like us sometimes to make friends and talk about the world. Peter is very shy, so he never visits when I am meeting other people and friends of mine. He tells me that he likes my Mom and my best friend. He also tells me that he likes our world.
Peter comes from a world that is very different from ours. In his world, all the elves sleep for long durations and in their dreams, they travel to other worlds like ours to meet people like us. He tells me that an elf can never have enough friends so they always want to make new ones. The day Peter and I met, he was dream travelling to our world. I have asked him to teach me how to dream travel. That way I can go and meet Peter’s family in his world. He keeps telling me about them. I think they are nice elves. I also want to visit Peter’s world because there, I can eat candies from the trees!
When I learn to dream travel, I can also visit other worlds just like Peter does all the time. My favourite one is a world that Peter visited a few months back. He told me that over there, 1+1=Yellow. I think that’s wonderful. Yellow is my favourite colour and I was never very good at maths. Till then, I would wait for a day when I catch my bed missing. If you happen to catch any of your furniture missing while you went to use the bathroom, please don’t be mad. Peter tells me that sometimes there is more traffic than usual.


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