Get here the summary, questions, answers, textbook solutions, extras, and pdf of Madam Rides the Bus by Villikkannan of Assam Board (SEBA) and Tripura Board (TBSE) Class 10 English (Second Language) textbook. However, the given notes/solutions should only be used for references and should be modified/changed according to needs.
Valliammai was a young girl of eight years old. Her nickname was Valli. She was extremely curious. Her favourite hobby was to stand on her front doorstep and watch what was going on outside. She didn’t have any friends. Observing the street provided her with a lot of new and strange experiences. She observed a bus that travelled between her village and the nearest town. She develops a desire to ride the bus. Her desire to take this bus journey became stronger with each passing day.
Valli begins compiling information for the bus trip. She paid close attention to the talk between her bus-riding neighbours. She asked the passengers a series of questions about how to ride the bus. She gathered all of the information she needed for the bus trip. She discovered the distance between her village and the nearest town, the one-way fare, and the fact that if she boarded the one o’clock bus, she could return by two forty-five on the same day. She evaluated the details and devised a clever plan for taking the bus.
Valli crept out of the house in the afternoon on a beautiful spring day when her mother was asleep. The conductor offered her his hand to help her get onto the bus when she was boarding, but she declined. She walked onto the bus after showing him the money for the bus fare. The conductor was amused by Valli’s ladylike gestures and assurance. He jokingly addressed her as ‘madam.’ Valli felt self-conscious since everyone was staring at her. She took a seat in a nearby empty seat. The bus was brand new and had white and green stripes on it. Valli paid close attention to everything on the bus. The window’s canvas blind had blocked half of her outside view, which was why she had picked the window seat. So she got out of her seat and looked out the upper half of the window to see what was going on outside.
She didn’t like it when others called her a ‘child’ or a ‘madam’, even though she was only eight years old. She made it obvious to the conductor and the rest of the bus passengers. Valli insisted on standing on her seat to obtain a better view of the outside, despite a gentleman’s advice to sit since she might be wounded otherwise. However, as more customers boarded, she sat in her seat, fearful of losing her place. Valli had carefully saved any stray coins that came her way. She was able to save sixty paise as a result of her efforts. She avoided all temptations, including buying toys, balloons, and riding the merry-go-round.
Valli was delighted to witness the sights of trees and farms going by outside the vehicle. She burst out laughing in the middle of the road, in front of the bus, at a cow running with her tail in the air. Valli was overjoyed to see the ‘bright-looking shops’ that were filled with a lot of products as the bus arrived in town after crossing the railroad. When the conductor questioned Valli why she wasn’t getting off the bus, she said she planned to take the same bus back to her hometown. She pulled thirty paise from her pocket and handed it to the conductor as her return ticket.
Valli was still looking forward to her return trip. She came across a cow that had died on the way. A fast-moving vehicle crashed into it. She was the same cow she’d seen previously. When the cow was alive, it was a charming and lovely creature who made Valli giggle with delight. The cow now appeared to be dreadful and terrifying. Valli’s joy had faded, and she sat unhappily and stuck to her seat. At 3:40 p.m., the bus arrived in her village. Valli arrived home to find her mother awake and conversing with one of her aunts. She was a nonstop talker. Her mother remarked that there are so many things in the outside world that they don’t really comprehend. Valli concurred with her mother’s opinion. She claimed that a lot of things were going on behind their backs. Her response was that she was “simply having a fit of a girl,” and that she was poking her nose into their talk like a grown lady. Valli smiled to herself but tried to keep the reason for her grin hidden from them.
Textual questions and answers
I. Oral Comprehension Check (Madam Rides the Bus)
1. What was Valli’s favourite pastime?
Answer: Valli would stand in her front doorway and observe what was going on outside the street. This was her favourite pastime.
2. What was a source of unending joy for Valli? What was her strongest desire?
Answer: A bus from Valli’s village to town passed through her street every hour. Valli could not get enough of this bus, which was always packed with people. Her deepest desire was to take the bus.
3. What did Valli find out about the bus journey? How did she find out these details?
Answer: Valli learned a couple of minor details about the bus ride. The town was six miles away, the fare was thirty paise one way, and the trip took forty-five minutes. Valli also discovered that she could return home on the same bus if she stayed in her seat and paid another thirty paise when she arrived in town.
By listening in on conversations between her neighbours and regular bus riders, Valli learned everything she knew about the bus ride. She also asked a few discreet questions to ensure her comprehension.
4. What do you think Valli was planning to do?
Answer: Valli intended to sneak out of the house, take the bus to town, and return on the same bus.
II. Oral Comprehension Check (Madam Rides the Bus)
1. Why does the conductor call Valli ‘madam’?
Answer: Valli insisted that she was as mature as the other bus passengers and made every effort to appear so. To amuse her, the conductor addressed her as ‘madam’.
2. Why does Valli stand up on the seat? What does she see now?
Answer: Valli’s view is obstructed by a canvas blind that covers the lower portion of the bus’s window, so Valli stands on the bus’s seat to get a better, unobstructed view of the world outside. Valli notices that the bus is passing through a narrow street with a canal on one side. She can see palm trees, grassland, distant mountains, and the blue sky beyond the canal. A deep ditch lies on the other side of the road, followed by acres of green fields as far as the eye can see.
3. What does Valli tell the elderly man when he calls her a child?
Answer: Valli became enraged when she was called a child and retorted angrily that she was not one. She told the elderly man that she had also paid the full bus fare, implying that she was entitled to be treated as an adult.
4. Why didn’t Valli want to make friends with the elderly woman?
Answer: The elderly lady had large holes in her earlobes and was wearing hideous earrings through them. This, combined with the fact that she was chewing betel nut, the juice of which appeared to be about to spill at any moment, made the elderly woman appear repulsive to Valli, who refused to befriend her.
III. Oral Comprehension Check (Madam Rides the Bus)
1. How did Valli save up money for her first journey? Was it easy for her?
Answer: Valli saved any stray coins she found to put money aside for her first trip. She even refused herself treats like a merry-go-round ride at the fair, peppermints, toys, balloons, and all the other little things that entice a child her age.
It was difficult for her because she was a child.
2. What did Valli see on her way that made her laugh?
Answer: With its tail held high, a young cow ran down the middle of the road. To get the cow off the road, the bus driver slowed down and blew his horn repeatedly, but this only served to scare the cow. The cow became more terrified as the driver honked, and it ran faster, but always in front of the bus. Valli found the situation to be extremely amusing, and she burst out laughing.
3. Why didn’t she get off the bus at the bus station?
Answer: Valli did not leave the bus at the bus station because she needed to catch the same bus back to her village. She was also afraid of getting lost. Her meticulous savings plan also enabled her to save enough money to purchase only two-way tickets between her village and the town. She needed to get home before her mother realised she was missing.
4. Why didn’t Valli want to go to the stall and have a drink? What does this tell you about her?
Answer: Valli refused to go to the stall and buy a drink because she did not want to get off the bus; second, she did not have enough money to buy herself a cold drink; and third, she had too much self-respect to accept the conductor’s offer.
This demonstrates that she was a strong-willed child who was not easily swayed by temptation. She was aware of her limitations and adhered to them. She was also a cautious child who held herself in high regard.
Additional/extra questions and answers of Madam Rides the Bus
1. In Madam Rides the Bus, did Valli know what the word “proud” meant? Why was this word used by Valli and her friends?
Answer: No, Valli had no idea what the word “proud” meant. The word was used by Valli and her friends as a slang expression of disapproval.
12. How did she save up the fare?
Answer: She saved every penny she could, foregoing toys, peppermints, and a joy ride at the fair, to pay for the sixty paise two-way fare.
13. Why does Valli refuse to look out of the window on her way back in the story Madam Rides the Bus?
Answer: In the story, Madam Rides the Bus, on her way back, Valli was taking in the sights outside when she noticed the cow that had been running around earlier lying dead on the street. The sight of its bloody, spread-eagled, lifeless body shook Valli. She could not believe the same animal that had been so charming and alive only moments before had turned into a lifeless corpse in the time it took her to return. She had lost all enthusiasm and was so upset that she would no longer look out the window.
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