Adventures of Toto
· The story ‘Adventures of Toto’ is written by Ruskin Bond who is renowned in India for his short stories for children, poems and novels.
· Adventures of Toto, a monkey make the story humorous and interesting.
· In this story a young pet monkey, Toto’s playfulness and mischiefs trouble and irritate all family members and inmates.
· The story highlights the narrator and his grandfather’s love for animals and it promotes loving upkeep of livestock.
Summary / Synopsis
§ The narrator Ruskin Bond’s grandfather was an animal lover. He made his own private zoo in his house where he kept various animals such as birds, rabbits, squirrel, tortoise, goat, etc.
§ He bought a baby monkey, Toto from a tonga driver for sum of 5 rupees. Toto was pretty monkey with bright eyes, deep set eyebrows, pearly white teeth, wide smile and a long tail.
§ The narrator’s grandmother did not like his pets. Toto’s presence was kept a secret from her. Toto was kept in a little closet opening into the narrator’s bedroom wall. Toto tore off author’s school blazer. He peeled off the wall paper also.
§ When Toto was kept with other animals, there he did not allow them to live peacefully. Grandfather was to go to Saharanpur to collect his pension. He took Toto with him to avoid disturbance to other animals.
§ He kept Toto in a canvas bag with a zipper on the top. Toto peeped out of bag and gave a frightening smile to the ticket collector who put Toto in category of dog. Grandfather had to pay extra fare for Toto.
§ Toto was ultimately accepted by the family. He was put into a stable with Nana, the donkey. Toto teased Nana all the time and didn’t let him eat his food. Toto and Nana could never become friends.
§ Once, Toto nearly boiled himself alive. He always wanted to copy what narrator would do. One day, a large kitchen kettle was left on the fire to boil water for tea. Toto sat inside the kettle and the water was quite hot. So, he stood up. Outside, it was cold. He sat down again. He continued hopping up and down till the grandmother came to rescue him from being burnt.
§ One day he entered the dining room and started eating from a big plate of pulao. When grandmother screamed at him, he ran out with the plate of Pulao and sat on the branch of jackfruit tree. After some time, to tease grandmother he threw the plate down and it broke to pieces.
§ Toto caused too much nuisance in the house. They were not so affluent that they could bear frequent loss of dresses, dishes, curtains, wall paper, etc. They decided that they won’t keep him in house any more.
§ Grandfather sold Toto back to the tonga driver for a sum of three rupees and heaved a sigh of relief.
Important Question answers
Q1. ‘Toto was another name of mischief’. Discuss.
Ans. Toto was another name of mischief. In my opinion it is a truth as Toto didn’t do anything except mischiefs. Narrator was right when he wrote if some part of our brain is devoted to mischief, it is fairly developed in Toto. He teased all the animals in the house that’s why grandfather had to take him to Saharanpur with him. He irritated all the family members and frightened the guests. He tore off wall paper, tore clothes and curtains and broke plates and other utensils. Once, He almost burnt himself alive in the tea kettle. He created so much nuisance that grandfather had to sell him back to the tonga driver with a loss of two rupees.
Q2. What happened on the Saharanpur journey?
Ans. Grandfather had to take Toto with him to Saharanpur to avoid disturbance to the family members and animals. He kept the monkey in a canvas bag with a zip on the top of it. Toto was trying to come out of bag and made the bag to roll. The other travellers were curious to know what is there inside the bag. When the ticket collector arrived to check grandfather’s ticket, he managed to peep out and gave a frightening smile to him. The ticket collector called him a dog and asked grandfather to pay the fare of a dog. Grandfather tried to convince him that he was a monkey and not a dog but ticket collector wasn’t convinced. He said that since he is a quadruped, he falls in the category of dog he had to pay the fare of a dog. Finally, grandfather paid the fare demanded for.