The Monk Who Came For My Ferrari

Contributor: Anton Gunasingam

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"There's a monk at our front door," I told my sister.

She was in bed reading a book. “What does he want?”

“He won’t say. He’s just standing there and grinning.”

She didn't look up. "Tell mom."

"I already did."


"She's busy emailing someone. She said she'll speak to him in a minute."

"Did you ask him in? Mom will say you didn't show him any respect. And she'll be mad."

"Already did. But like I told you he isn’t replying."

"Is he one of those foreign guys who can't speak English?"

"No. He looks like us. But he's got a bowl under his arm."

"A bowl?" My sister was interested. "What kind of a bowl?"

I shrugged. "I don't know. But it’s a pretty big one. Like those bowls you put fish in."

My sister shut her book. "Let's go have a look."

He didn't see us check him out from the upstairs window. And from where we stood, we couldn't see much of him either. Just the top his head and it was all white and gleaming as if he'd massaged it with a load of grease.

My sister stared at him for a long while without speaking. When she finally turned and looked at me, she had a worried look on her face.

"What's the matter?" I asked her.

She said, "I think he's come for your Ferrari."

I said, "What are you saying?"

She said, "Didn't you see what dad was reading the other day?"

I shook my head. She said, "It's a book called The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari."

I stared at her puzzled. "What does that have to do with this guy who's on our doorstep?"

She said, "Don't you get it, Dumbo?"

I shook my head.

She said, "The monk sold his Ferrari, so now he's come for yours."

Of all the cars I owned, the Ferrari was my prized possesson. It was what I dreamt about when I slept. So naturally, I hoped she was wrong. I said, "The guy on the cover of dad's book, he looks different. It can't be him."

She disagreed. "Then, why is he carrying a bowl?" she asked. When I didn't reply, she gave me the answer. "It’s to put your Ferrari in, Dumbo."

"Well, he's not taking it away. I'm not giving it to him," I said firmly.

Sister gave me a sad look. "You don't have a choice, Dumbo. If he asks, mom won't refuse. She'll never turn a monk down." She seemed so certain of what she was saying that it had me worried. "But it's my Ferrari," I protested. "She can't give away my things without asking me."

Sister shrugged. "Who bought it for you?"




"So she can give it away," she said.

"But it's mine. They gave it to me."

My sister sighed. "I know that. You know that. And mom and dad know that. But when a monk appears and asks for your Ferrari, how can they refuse? Think of what'll happen if they do. They’ll get landed with bad

"But it's not fair," I wailed. Sister put her finger to her lips. "Shush. He might hear you. And that will be worse."

"I said, "I don't care. It's my car. And I want it."

Then, we heard mom at the door. She spoke to the monk. My sister bit her hand. "It's bye-bye time for your Ferrari, brother."

Mom went into the kitchen. When she came out she headed straight back to the open door. There was more conversation. We heard a rustling. Mom put something into the monk's bowl. Then, he was gone and she
shut the door.

"Mom," I called out.

"Yes, dear?"

"What did the monk want?"

"Some food, dear," Mom said.

Next to me, my sister shook her head. Her twelve-year-old eyes were wider than usual. "She's lying, brother," she whispered. "Don't believe her. She's lying. How can she tell you the truth about your car? Better go check for yourself. The last time, I saw it, it was on the floor next to my Barbie."

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I have a BA in Mass Communications and I write features for 'The Sunday Island'
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