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I WAS still a thief when I met Anil. And though only 15, I was an experienced and fairly successful hand.
     Anil was watching a wrestling match when I approached him. He was about 25 — a tall, lean fellow — and he looked easy-going, kind and simple enough for my purpose. I hadn’t had much luck of late and thought I might be able to get into the young man’s confidence.
     “You look a bit of a wrestler yourself,” I said. A little flattery helps in making friends.
     “So do you,” he replied, which put me off for a moment because at that time I was rather thin.
     “Well,” I said modestly, “I do wrestle a bit.”
     “What’s your name?”
     “Hari Singh,” I lied. I took a new name every month. That kept me ahead of the police and my former employers.
The lesson "The thief's story" is written by Ruskin Bond. The lesson narrates how a thief's life changes when he meets a good human being. The story opens with the narrator stating that he was a thief when he met Anil. Though he was fifteen years old, he was experienced and good at stealing.

When the thief met Anil, he was watching a wrestling match. He then describes the appearance of Anil. Anil was a tall and lean guy. He was about twenty-five years old. According to the thief, Anil looked like an easy-going and kind man. He believed that Anil would be a good man to steal things from. So he thought about getting comfortable with him. Also, the thief had not committed any theft in the past few days as he did not get a chance.
Wrestling match

While looking at Anil, the thief said that he looked like a wrestler. The thief used these sugar-coated words to make friends with him. He assumed that he would become his friend if he were praising Anil. After hearing the thief's conversation, Anil replied that even the thief looked like a wrestler, which offended him as he was very thin. The thief modestly replied that he did wrestle a bit sometimes. Anil then asked the thief's name, and the narrator lied that he was Hari Singh. The narrator had the character of changing his name every month to escape from the police and his ex-employers.
Meanings of the difficult words:
Thief A person who steals
Wrestling A sport in which two people fight and try to throw each other to the ground
Approach Come near or nearer to someone or something in distance or time
Lean Of a person thin and in good physical condition
ConfidenceThe quality of being certain of your abilities or of having trust in people, plans, or the future
Wrestler A person who takes part in wrestling, especially for sport
EmployerA person or organisation that employs people
National Council of Educational Research and Training (2007). Footprints without Feet. The Thief's Story - Ruskin Bond (pp. 08-13). Published at the Publication Division by the Secretary, National Council of Educational Research and Training, Sri Aurobindo Marg, New Delhi.