{I’ m croaking! I’m croaking! (another frog ‘well of course we’re frogs!’) No, I’m dying! I’d my fortune told! (‘oh, well I’ll help you with that… hits him in the head with a rock and knock into pond… now your fortune was right!’}.

The frog-in-the-well is about just what the title implies… a frog that lives in a well. R.K. Narayan calls it a Wellisian… a small little frog that has lived there for a long time. The latter is born and brought up there. The frog is happy, believing that he’s the best and smartest creature alive. For him the well is his world. He’s every reason to feel completely satisfied with the cool surroundings and soft moss-upholstered walls around. For him the day means the period when the sun appears over the pulley overhead. Wellisian seeks extra-social life by moving on to other parts of the well to hobnob with the fellow wellisians for community (chorus) singing. They croak, dine and breathe air pregnant with water droplets.

‘Come out of the well & see the whole sky!’ Wellisian gets a call. “Whence are you?”, “I’m from the sea.” The frog-of-the-sea replies. “The Sea, how big is that?” “It’s very big.” The frog-of-the-sea says. Wellisian stretches its legs and questions, “Ah! Is your sea so big?” “It’s much bigger.”The frog-of-the-sea says. Wellisian then takes a leap from one side of the well to the other and asks, “Is it as big as this, my well?” “My friend,” says the-frog-of-the-sea, “how can you compare the sea with your well?” The frog-of-the-well asserts, “No, there can never be anything bigger than my well. Indeed, nothing can be bigger than this! This fellow is a liar, he must be turned out.” Sitting in his own little well, he thinks, the whole world is no bigger than his well.

Frogs are found all over the world, apart from some isolated islands and Antarctica. They’re amphibians, well known for their ability to jump and croak. Why in the world do frogs croak? Do they try to relay some sort of vital message into our hardened heads? If you wonder why they make this noise, keep reading to find out. Some frogs croak for a territorial call. Others make a high-pitched noise to distract the predator. Each species of frog has a unique call. Most frogs amplify this sound with their vocal sacs, but some frogs have other ways of amplifying the noise.

We’ve all been guilty of being the-frog-in-the-well at some point, but some people truly do believe that their experiences are the only possible experiences. Wellisian has a very limited knowledge, limited to the well he lives in and/or the circular patch of heavens over the pulley above. He doesn’t have any idea about the frog that lives in the sea. Nor does he know about his way of thinking. Experiencing, understanding and accepting all the highs and lows of life, in all its different colors, cultures, and flavors are necessary in life. Our noisy frog maybe the loudest in the well for everyone looks up to him and praises him, not only in front of him but at his back too. He’s happy, content with the life that he’s leading. “I’m so happy to live here… When I go out, I jump about on the railing beside the mouth of the well… when I come home I rest in the holes of the wall… the water comes up to my armpits and holds up my cheeks when I jump in… if I walk in the mud, it covers up my feet… look around, the wriggly worms, crabs or tadpoles, none can compare with me here… I’m the Lord of the well’.

Wellisian doesn’t have the slightest of doubt that he’s the beater who knows every damn thing on earth… humanity needs his wise counseling/guidance every moment… he’s the bearer of all the light that world needs… he’s an expert on everything… and therefore… has a say in any every matter and in any manner. The self-styled whiz-kid keen to say something… he wants to tell everyone what to do and how to do… he may even advise the army general (as R K Narayan puts it) how to fight… and God Himself to manage the universe.

The smart ass possesses a swellhead… he’s vainglorious, always prides in himself and is enamored of the sound of his voice. Quite fond of brief-case-display… suggestive of the lower end of the peck of order… , inside the chauffeur-driven car on the back-seat Wellisian sits with his neck, rather body stiffened as if the car, driver and the road all were under obligation to him. Outside his posh office chamber chic-looking secretary dials for him and fixes appointments for subordinates and visitors… they must be kept waiting… Saab is busy in the meeting.

The male working uniform is a badge of belonging to the white-collar class and a symbol of respectability. The swellhead goes on cloud 9 for the compliments he receives for spending lavishly on high profile labels. Given the chance the Wellisian may acquire a piece or two of high profile Anderson Sheppard/Donna Karen /Louis lapez, Bijan Pakzad suits worn by celebrities like prince Charles, Bill Clinton, Warren Buffet, Bill Gates, Obama, Frank Sinatra, Cary Grant, Arnold Schwarzenegger and Michael Jordan. He even thinks in terms of his persona, an image howsoever bizarre that makes diet of daily news—in office, society and even media—and keeps him in the limelight. He may even go to the extent of calling ghost-writers. The itch-to-leave-something-for-posterity about how he got to the-top-of-the-heap—he may feel succeeding generations should learn from his experience can be satisfied. For ghost-writers after all know how to lace other people’s lives with their own imaginations.

The sea does not change along with time, nor does its level rise or fall according to the amount of rainfall. Ironically while Wellisian is lost in his world of fantasies and vulgar ostentation he can’t understand the greatest happiness of a frog that lives in the Sea. The tragedy with our poor myopic Wellisian is that he has no idea how significant the world outside the well is.



Source by Tajamul Hussain