Working with the Text

Q.1: Did the front wheel really wobble? What is your opinion? Give a reason for your answer.

Ans: The fact was that the front wheel was alright. It didn’t wobble unless the man shook it violently. It began to wobble only after repair because some of the balls were lost.

Q.2: In what condition did the author find the bicycle when he returned from the tool shed?

Ans: The author found the man holding the front wheel between his legs. He was moving it round

between his fingers. The remaining portion of the bicycle was lying on the stony path beside him.

Q.3: “Nothing is easier than taking off the gear case.” Comment on or continue this sentence in the light of what actually happens.

Ans: Taking off the gear case is an easy task. The friend took less than five minutes to unscrew the gear box. It lay on the path in two pieces. Only the screws were lost.

Q.6: Describe ‘the fight’ between the man and the machine. Find the relevant sentences in the text and write them.

Ans: The friend set to work to reset the gear case. He put the bicycle in different positions in order to work on it. He lay on the ground to work at it from below. He doubled himself across it till he lost his balance and slid over on to his head. Then he lost his temper. There was a rough and tumble fight between him and the machine. Sometimes he was on the top of the bicycle and the next moment, the bicycle was on the top while he lay on the ground.

Working with Language

Q.1: Rewrite each of the following sentences using ‘should / ought to / must’ in place of italicized words.

(i) You are obliged to do your duty irrespective of consequences.

(ii) You will do well to study at least for an hour every day.

(iii) The doctor said it is necessary for her to sleep eight hours every night.

(iv) It is right that you show respect towards elders and affection towards the youngsters.

(v) If you want to stay healthy, exercise regularly.

(vi) It is good for you to walk every morning.

(vii) It is strongly advised that you don’t stand on your head.

(viii) As he has a cold, it is better for him to go to bed.


(i) You should do your duty irrespective of consequences.

(ii) You must study at least for an hour every day.

(iii) The doctor said it is must for her to sleep eight hours every night.

(iv) You should respect your elders and show affection towards the youngsters.

(v) You ought to exercise regularly.

(vi) You should take a walk every morning.

(vii) You shouldn’t stand on your head.

(viii) As he has a cold, he should go to bed.

Additional Questions

Q.1: How did the narrator feel when his friend shook his bicycle violently? (or)

What was the feeling of the writer of this story when his friend shook his bicycle violently?

Ans: The narrator (writer) was hurt when his friend shook the bicycle violently. It is because his friend was hurting his bicycle for no apparent reason. He even told his friend,”Don’t do that; you will hurt it”. Moreover, the right person to shake the bicycle was its owner, not an outsider.

Q.2: “It is not only your skill that fascinates me”, commented the narrator. What was it that fascinated him?

Ans: The narrator watched the drama of bicycle repairing as a helpless spectator. In the meantime he felt hurt also. Nevertheless he lauded two qualities of his friend: first, his self-confidence to do the job well and secondly, his robust hopefulness.

Q.3: Who do you think is the winner of the battle between man and machine (the bicycle)?

Ans: Actually man and machines are not really rivals or enemies. Man invented the machines to make life easy and comfortable. Machines serve man faithfully as long as they are looked after properly. Man is the creator while, machine is the executor. So there is no question of winning or loosing. A skilled mechanic gets good response and co-operation from the machine. The writer’s (narrator of this story) friend had to struggle with the bicycle for a couple of hours just because he was not a professional.