Selcuk had been
preparing for days. During the festival there would be a contest with a prize
for the children: a kite contest.
Selcuk heard of
that from his friends. At first he had disdained it. But the prize amounting
one hundred liras appealed to him. He would keep this a secret from his friends.
He did so. He wanted nobody to see him buying colored papers from the market.
Late in the afternoon he came home having secretly hid the papers in a file. Papers
did not constitute the whole thing. He needed to ask those organizing the festival
about the details.
The room in the
entrance of the municipality was for the festival organizers. The door was open.
- Could you please
give me some information about the kite contest?
- Why not?
A young girl was
saying this. She was the secretary of the festival committee.
- Are you going
to join the contest, too?
- Yes, I intend
- Have you got
a kite? It has to be made by you. You can't join the contest with a ready-made kite.
I know about that.
What I want to know is something else.
Let me know what it is.
for the kite set or can everyone contest with a kite in any size and with any
color he wants to make.
The girl smiled:
- You can join
with a kit that is in any form, any color, and any size you want. However, you
have to be ready on the dock half an hour before the contest time.
- At what time?
- Just at half
past two p.m. On the dock. And your kite with you. Got it?
Selcuk had got
what he wanted. He thanked her. The secretary called after him:
See kid, will you
come for a moment?
Selcuk turned back
from the door.
Stopped in front
of the girl.
- I must write
down your application. What is your name and surname?
- Selcuk Akca.
- Your address?
- Mehtap street,
- That's all. You
can go now. Don't forget, at half past two p.m. on Thursday, on the dock.
Selcuk rushed through
the market. Turned towards the dock. Stopped on this way paved with cement along the
seashore. Here he was going to fly his kite. His heart began beating with excitement.
He raised his head up to the sky. It was deep blue. The kite he was going to
make with his own hands would rise just there. Above all the other kites and
the most attractive of all.
Just at that moment a flock of crows flew past. Selcuk shouted suddenly:
- What have you
done? You have torn my kite. Then he looked around. Fortunately there was no
one around. He was talking to himself for the first time. What would he do if
something like that actually happened during the contest? He should think about
it thoroughly. May be a picture would be necessary to avert crows. What could
it be? He got it, he thought of something: a picture of a cat. Why not? You
should have watched crows facing a picture of a cat attacking them.
With this idea
in his mind Selcuk came home. He sat at the table in the small room. Looked
at his colored papers. There were all colors. Now all he lacked was
lath. He could get this only from carpenters. There was one he knew. His father
mentioned of him often. Uncle Servet. He could go to him and ask for some; he
would pay after all, would he not? One summer his father had intended to send
Selcuk to him as his apprentice. He rushed to his mother:
- Mummy can you
give me some money?
- Money? How much?
And you did not tell me what you are going to do with it?
- You know. There
is a kite contest in the festival. I am going to join the contest. So I need to make
- So what?
- And to make a
kite I need to buy lath. I bought colored papers with my money. Now I will buy
lath and make a kite.
- Good, but do you
know how to make a kite? Don't make a complete mess of it. You had better do
it with your father.
- Mummy, what's
the difference between buying it from the market and making it with your father?
This contest is for children, not for fathers.
His mother smiled.
Her son was right. She held out the one thousand lira she had taken out of her
- Bargain, ok?
Selcuk rushed out
of the house. Just as he was to turn around the corner, he met his father.
- Selcuk, nothing wrong, I hope? Where are you rushing to?
- Daddy I decided
to compete in the kite contest. I am going to buy lath from Uncle Servet.
- Do you need my
- No, daddy. I
must do it by myself. The father smiled:
- Then you have
confidence in yourself. Say hello to Uncle Servet.
The father was
glad that his son was involved in such an event. He had embarked on a job by
himself. Could a better behavior be expected from a kid? He walked home.
came to the door of Uncle Servet. He looked in:
- Hello Uncle Servet.
The master who
was adjusting a piece of lumber in his machine, turned his head:
- Ah Selcuk! It's
you. Come in.
- Say, what on earth
brought you here?
Selcuk told him what
he was planning.
- I ask you to
give me some lath.
The master looked
- Is one meter
Selcuk did not
say anything. He could not predict how long one meter was.
- How long is it
compared to my height?
The master looked at him:
- It will be a
little above your waist. Enough?
- You know Uncle
The master chose
three of the laths leaning against the wall. Laid them one on the other. Measured
them with a meter. By means of a saw he cut three of them at the same time along
the line he had marked with a pen.
- Here you are.
Selcuk held out
the money in his hand:
- How much am I
to pay Uncle Servet?
The master smiled.
He fondled Selcuk's hair:
- No need for money
or anything else. Come first, that will be enough.
took the laths.
suddenly felt happy. Having made a child happy made him happy, too.
- If you wish, I
will mark them right on the middle. You know a kite must be well-balanced.
He determined the
middle of one of the laths. He marked the other laths as well:
- These marks are
- Ok uncle Servet.
Thank you very much.
- Say hello to
- It's ok.
home through the back streets. The staff was complete. A roll of string for
kite was in the house. His father had bought it in the past. He sat at the table.
He laid the lathes one on the other in a way that their middles would match
each other. He drew them aside with equal distances. He tied them. Then he cut
notches near their edges. The string mustn't have moved. Tying them on those
points he ensured that laths remained in the same distance. Then he suspended
them tying a string on the middle. The lath was parallel to the ground.
Selcuk got excided.
Now he was he going to arrange the colored papers. But first of all he needed
to prepare the paste he would use as adhesive.
- Now see how kite
He was talking to himself.
After a while the
kite was ready. Now it was time for the picture of a cat whose mouth is open.
He drew it with charcoal on a white drawing paper. Then he glued it on the front
side of the kite. The cat was really frightening. The kite was ready. He gathered
it and its very long tail up. He laid it on top of the cupboard. But he must
have flown it before the contest. He should not rely on his luck. Now where
would he fly it? He suddenly thought of the green slope at the back. At these
times it was remote.
He looked out of
the window. Yes, it would be allright to test the kite there. He opened the
door. He ran to the area with the kite in his hand. When he had climbed to the
slope there was nobody around. He tested the kite in his hands. Suddenly the
kite caught the wind. It raised higher and higher as the spring was freed. It
was floating in the air without lurching. Selcuk had succeeded. He had made
a correctly balanced kite. And the cat looked so frightening...
rolled the string. He carefully gathered the approaching kite. He came home.
Selcuk spent that
night sleeping comfortably. He got up pretty early on the day of the contest. He
was looking forward to noon. Time past so slowly. His parents were excited
as well. When the three came on the dock together it was one o'clock. No one
had arrived yet.
- Look, Selcuk start
to fly your kite if you wish to. You will fly it in any case, won't you?
His mother interrupted:
- But do they allow
Why shouldn't they? What they wanted was the kite to fly, wasn't it?
it was ok. He wanted to send his kite up to the sky as son as possible. He wanted
them to see. See how a kite flies. He untied the string and forwarded. The kite
rose at once. It rose higher and higher. Now it was in the sky, floating. Those
coming on the dock were pointing out it with admiration.
Right at that time
a great many crows came out of hell. They flew directly to the kite. They
started to peach the kite actually the cat picture on it.
It turned out the
way Selcuk had feared.
- No! Daddy, look
at them. They are punching my kite.
His father was
looking bewildered. Suddenly the kite fell upside down. It rapidly came down
on the sea. Selcuk pulled the string desperately. At that moment the sound of
a pipe was heard. The head of the jury was inviting the kids to the contest.