"Being safe" is a story about safety rules to be followed in our daily lives. The story is in a conversational style. It is set in a manner where a group of children are in discussion with their friend's grandfather, fondly known as grandpa. The conversation happens in a place called Nagathi, a river island in Thanjavur.
Prasanth lived in a place called Tiruchirappalli in Tamil Nadu. He visited his grandparents in Thanjavur, a nearby city, for his summer vacation. His grandparents lived in an island called Nagathi. The river Vatar in Thanjavur divided into two and merged again to form this village. Since the river flows in these areas, it is always lush green with beautiful landscapes with majestic trees. Prasanth had a lot of friends in Nagathi. He loved spending time with his grandfather and his friends.
His grandfather had retired from a Central Government job. His work had required him to travel to many places in India, and therefore he had gathered knowledge from his various experiences. Grandfather's knowledge always entertained Prasanth. As soon as he reached his grandparents house, the news reached his friends. They all arrived at grandpa's house and wanted to take Prasanth out for playing. Grandpa was a very caring person. He gave them some instructions and tips to go safely.
This section deals with road safety. The characters in this scene are:
Sundar greeted grandpa with a "Good Afternoon" and asked where Prasanth was. Grandpa greeted back every one with "Good afternoon". Ravi asked grandpa if they could take Prasanth out to play in the fields. Grandpa immediately agreed but cautioned them that they should be careful while walking on roads. Peter replied that their teacher had taught them the rules of road safety and that they followed them firmly always.
Grandpa started questioning them. He asked them which side of the road they should walk. Jaffer took the question and replied that we should walk on the right side of the road, which was opposite to the side of the traffic - so that they can see the vehicles coming. Grandpa said "good" and asked if they knew how to cross the road. Mani replied this time. He said we should wait till the vehicles clear the road. He further added that we should look right, left and again right to check if there are vehicles and then cross the road. Gandhi added that they would walk in a line one behind the other and not in groups.
To cross the road, wait until the traffic is clear!
Finally, grandpa said that they should never use a cell phone while walking on the road.
Do not use cell phones while walking on the road!
He advised that road safety rules are for our safety and we should follow it strictly.
This scene deals with the safety precautions to be taken when going out during hot summers.
Prasanth joined his friends in this scene. The characters in this scene are:
Prasanth greeted his friends with a "Hi!". Murthy said they had come to play under the shade of the big neem tree. Grandpa agreed and said kids need to be careful as it was very hot that day. Mani said his mother had instructed him not to wander outside in the heat between \(10\) AM to \(3\) PM as it was very hot. Grandpa said what Mani's mother said was true, but he also said that they needed physical activities. Children should not remain indoors always since it is very hot outside. Grandpa told them to play safely in the sun. He advised them to take breaks by going inside or to places with shade.
Sam had a doubt he asked if they can put on sunscreen before going out. Grandpa replied that they need to put sunscreen \(15\)-\(20\) minutes before going out to avoid sunburn (reddening of the skin) due to excessive heat.
Sunburn (reddening of the skin) due to excessive heat.
Prasanth said he was feeling extremely tired. Grandpa found that it must be due to the heat he added that when the body cannot cool itself fast, we may get a sunstroke. A stroke is a sudden attack that disables you or stops the blood flow to the brain. Due to excessive heat, one may get a sunstroke. Prasanth asked how he would know if he was getting a sunstroke.
Grandpa explained the symptoms of the sunstroke:
- feeling hot
- having a headache
- feeling giddy
- feeling nauseated
Symptoms - headache, nausea, giddiness due to heat
Grandpa advised the children to inform an adult nearby if they had any of the above symptoms. Jaffer told he liked to play outdoor games better than indoor games. Grandpa replied that it was good, but they should know the dangers and difficulties of doing every activity. Going outdoor and playing games is good, but we should play in a safe environment.
This scene deals with safety measures to be followed at home. The characters in this scene are:
Ravi asked grandpa if he could explain the safety measures to be practised at home. Grandpa started by saying that we should learn to keep things back in their places from where we took them, after use. He also added that children should not play with sharp objects like knives, scissors etc. Just then the mobile phone rang, and Ravi handed over the phone to grandpa. Grandpa thanked Ravi for passing the phone and told him that it was his old friend Raghu on the call. Madan said "wow!" and that it's a nice phone. Ravi said it was the latest model phone that Grandpa bought in Chennai last week. Prasanth told that he had heard that it worked like a supercomputer. Ravi agreed and said it was useful for his projects also.
Grandpa said mobile phones are very useful, but one should use it carefully and only in the presence of adults. Prasanth asked grandpa to explain the safety measures to be taken while using the internet. Grandpa told that we should make ourselves cyber safe - cyber safe means remaining safe in the online world. We should not display out personal information, photos or vacation schedules in the social media.
Be cyber safe!
Grandpa moved to the next item of safety measure - keeping some household items out of reach of small children. They are:
- Fertilizers (poisonous chemicals)
- Antifreeze (a liquid that can be added to water to lower the freezing point) used in engines, heaters etc.
- Makeup sets
- Poisonous items
Grandpa had a question for the children - he asked what they thought about handling medicines properly. Ravi said we should store all medicines out of reach and sight of small children. It means children should not be able to see or touch medicines. Grandpa agreed and said that medicines should be kept in a locked container. Jaffer added that tablets, syrups should be kept in their original boxes, and the remaining pills should be counted. This ensures that medicines names do not get mixed up and we will have a count of remaining medicines in hand. Grandpa appreciated him saying it was a nice idea. Ravi told that he understood that misuse of medicines could be avoided by doing so.
Keep pills and syrups in original containers!
Grandpa told them that dangerous automobile and gardening products should be kept safely locked somewhere. Devi had a point to add - she told that a first aid kit should be compulsory in every house with an instruction paper inside it. This is to know the items to be used in case of different emergencies. Grandpa appreciated the kids that they were coming up with good ideas. All the children thanked grandpa for his instruction. They told him that they would follow his advice and protect themselves from dangers. Grandpa said that it was getting late and they could talk more the following day. Grandpa told them to take care of themselves.