Din Din's grandparents come to fruit park

It was a bright summer morning, as the sun sparkled on the crystal clear waters of the lake.

There was a flurry of activity in Din Din's cave home in Fruit Park. The cave was being swept from end to end. Every nook and corner was being spring cleaned. Scents of food cooking wafted from the kitchen hearth. Din Din was sweeping the threshold of the cave.

"Why are Mom and Dad so excited?" inquired Don, Din Din's youngest brother.

Din Din smiled, "Its dad's parents—they're coming to Fruit Park to visit."

"How come I've never met them?" inquired Don curiously.

"Well, when most of the dinosaurs moved to Fruit Park several years ago, when I was a baby. Derek, Dave and you weren't even born yet. That's when our parents moved here too. But many older dinosaurs refused to move from their old homes. Our grandparents didn't want to move from their familiar surroundings either," explained Din Din.

Derek and Dave had wandered upto Din Din too. "Where did the old dinosaurs live?"

"I remember Dad telling me that the dinosaurs used to live up near the foot of the mountains. It was a harsh terrain and a difficult life. The decision to move to Fruit Park was one which was taken by the leaders of the dinosaurs. Old Rex was the young elected leader and he took a lot of dynamic decisions for the dinosaur community," explained Din Din.

"The main reason we moved was because we lived a savage life and fed on other animals," came their father's voice. "Fruit Park gave us a refined lifestyle, fruits to feed on and the most important thing was that the Terrestrial School was nearer so that our young could get education."

"But Dad, why didn't your parents move too if there were so many benefits to living in Fruit Park?" asked Derek.

"Son, some people don't accept change easily. They find comfort in familiar things. My father and mother had become accustomed to life at the foot of the mountains. Apart from my parents there are just a handful of other elder dinosaurs who live there," shrugged Mr. D. "Every six months I make a trip there and every time I try to persuade them to come here. In my last visit, I finally convinced them that they should come with a group of dinosaurs who are also planning to visit their families here in Fruit Park."

"I'm excited to meet them," quipped Don eagerly.

Mr. D smiled, "So am I dear! Now they arrive tonight so we must make sure everything is perfect. I want to use this opportunity to finally show them how much better life in Fruit Park is."

By nightfall, Din Din's family was waiting near the edge of Fruit Park to welcome their grandparents. Finally, they saw a glimpse of some fireflies guiding a group of travellers.

Mr. D hurried towards the group. When he returned, Din Din and his brothers saw two old dinosaurs. They walked slowly and their long necks were stooped, their skin wrinkled with age. Mrs. Dee rushed to hug them warmly.

"Ma, Pa, this is Din Din, Derek, Dave and Don!" introduced Mr. D.

"Oh my! Din Din, you have grown up. You are taller than us all," said Grandpa D.

Grandma D grabbed all the young ones in a huge embrace. "My lovely babies!' she kept whispering.

"Come on Ma, Pa, let's go home!" said Mr. D as he led the whole family to their cave.

The days flew by as Grandpa told stories of his younger days in the mountains and Grandma cooked delicious stews and jams in the cave kitchen.

"It's such a learning experience just listening to Grandpa D talk," shared Din Din with Dazel and Delma at the lakeside. "And Grandma is so loving, she pampers us all the time. She tells us bedtime stories and cooks our favourite stuff."

"Oh, Din Din! You are so lucky," said Delma wistfully.

"I wish I had family too," added Dazel.

"I will bring them to meet you," said Din Din impulsively.

So the next evening, Grandpa and Grandma D finally met Dazel and Delma. "It's so heartwarming to finally meet you both!

Din Din talks about you all the time," remarked Grandma D.

"The pleasure is ours," said Delma graciously. The hours sped by as the grandparents chatted with the three friends.

Din Din noticed that his usually over-worked father seemed more relaxed these days as he shared his work problems with Grandpa D. His mother had more time to give her chocolate business because Grandma D had deftly taken care of the house work. "It keeps me fit and active!" Grandma would remark cheerily whenever Mrs. Dee asked her to rest.

One Sunday morning at the breakfast table, Grandpa D finally said, "So my dears, it's finally time for me and Grandma to return to the mountains."

There was a stunned silence at the table. "But Pa, 'this' is your home," said Mr. D.

"Please Pa, your grandchildren are here and they need you; 'we' need you. It is time you both rested and let us take care of you. This is no age for you both to live by yourself and that too, so far from us," urged Mrs. Dee desperately.

Grandpa D was silent. Grandma D lowered her head.

"I've never thought about living here permanently," said Grandpa after a long and heavy silence.

"Well, think about it now," persuaded Din Din eagerly. "Yes, Grandpa, please!" said Derek, Dave and Don in unison.

Grandpa whispered something inaudible and left the table. He trudged out of the cave. Grandma D followed him silently.

The entire day Din Din's grandparents did not return. By nightfall, Mr. D was frantic. "Where could they be? Maybe something has happened."

Just then they heard the shuffling of heavy feet at their cave threshold.

"Pa! Ma!" exclaimed Mr. D and rushed towards them to hug them.

When everyone was seated, Grandpa D cleared his throat. "I have always been independent and have never wanted to be a burden on anyone. Now, in my old age, I don't want to be a...liability. We have had such a wonderful time with you, my dears. I want you all to have pleasant memories of us."

Mr. and Mrs. D had tears in their eyes. "Parents are never a burden, Pa. You cared for me when I was younger and made me into the hardworking, independent creature I am today. Now I want to take care of you. Please, don't take that opportunity away from me."

Grandpa D looked towards his wife. Finally, Grandma D spoke in her soft, lilting voice. "I think we should stay here. The kind of contentment I have felt in these few weeks here is something I don't want to live without anymore. Home is where the heart is!" Everyone held their breath and looked at Grandpa. After what seemed liked ages, the old dinosaur smiled, "Have I ever been able to refuse anything you have said?"

"Yayyy!" cheered Din Din and his brothers. And the sounds of merriment continued through the night from Din Din's cave.

The Adventures of D'Land
Animated Series

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