Essay on A Lost Key

A few weeks into the long holidays I felt very restless.

I had gone camping with my friends, watched the latest videotapes read all the books I wanted to and now I did not know what to do with myself. Out of desperation I even considered getting a part-time job, but I was too lazy. As I lay on my bed day-dreaming; my mother walked into the room.

She sighed and said “Why don’t you tidy up your room? It’s such a mess.”

I groaned at the thought of having to do so much work.

“C’mon, you’ve slept enough. Get up!”

Slowly I dragged myself out of bed and wearily set about the task of tidying up my room. It seemed impossible; so much junk lying around the floor, books all over the writing table and cobwebs decorating the corners. As the afternoon wore on, I began to actually feel happier. I supposed that the very act of cleaning the room must have lifted up my spirits. Soon I found myself whistling cheerfully.

After a while of spirited wiping off the dust from my writing table, I sat down on my chair to rest awhile. My eyes fell onto a sturdy wooden box at one corner of my room. Ah, I felt even happier, for in the box are my most precious belongings souvenirs, badges, lengths of ropes, marbles and assorted nameless things a schoolboy keeps. The thought of rummaging through these belongings was very welcome. I could do with a nostalgia trip. It was a long time since I opened that box.

I pulled the box to the middle of the room and tugged at its cover. It would not budge. Locked! I thought: where did I keep the key? My mind worked furiously. Oh yes, the key was in the right-hand drawer of my writing table. I distinctly recalled putting it there. I opened the drawer and searched inside. There was no key to be found. I must have missed it. I removed the drawer from the table and emptied its contents on the floor. After a few minutes of searching, I found my temper getting out of control. There was no key. The other drawer I emptied it on the floor and searched frantically but there was no key. I wanted to scream.

Uttering oaths and curses under my breath, I went through all the possible places in my room where I could have placed the key. I spent the good part of an hour going twice over all these places but I could not find my missing key.

Finally, I stormed out of the room and questioned all the members of my family about the key. Nobody could help me. They were not very happy either with my approach. I admit I was quite agitated and must have behaved badly. I stormed back to the room, stared at the offending box and gave it a kick. All I got was a painful toe for my trouble.

I considered prying open the box with a crow-bar but I decided against it because it was a beautiful box and I did not want to spoil it. Then I got hold of all the keys I could lay my hands on and tried opening the confounded lock. It was useless. I had to give up in despair.

I pushed the offending box back to its corner.

Later that week, David, my younger brother often, invited me to go fishing with him down the river. As I had so much free time I accepted his invitation. I dug some earthworms while he prepared the fishing rods. Soon we were at our favorite spot by the river. Eagerly I cast my line into the river and waited for the fish to bite.

Suddenly David yelled in delight. He had a bite. For a small chap, David was a great angler, much better than me. He landed a fish, a medium-sized tilapia. Not bad, I thought. Then from the corner of my eye, I spied something familiar. It was not the fish. Rather it was the weight that David had tied to his line. I grabbed the weight. I looked hard and long at it. It was my missing key! My brother had been using it as a fishing weight all this time! What a cheek! I glared at him. He gave me an innocent look. I shook my head in disbelief.

Fishing out my penknife, I cut the key from the line. David protested. I glared at him again. I was really angry. He shrugged his shoulders and kept quiet.

Standing up with the key in my hand, I told him to fix himself a new line. I headed home. I could have my nostalgia trip after all.

Filed Under: Essays