A Letter to God – NCERT Solutions

Q. What did Lencho hope for?

Ans. Lencho hoped for a good rainfall.

Q. Why did Lencho say the raindrops were like ‘new coins’?

Ans. He called the drops of rain ‘new coins’ because a good rainfall meant a good harvest. A good harvest will bring him a lot of money.

Q. How did the rain change? What happened to Lencho’s fields?

Ans. Suddenly a strong wind began to blow. Along with the rain very large hailstones began to fall. These were truly like silver coins. The boys ran out to collect the frozen pearls. The rain did not stop. For an hour hail rained everywhere. Lencho’s fields were white, as if they were covered with salt. The corn was totally destroyed. The flowers were gone from the plants.

Q. What were Lencho’s feelings when the hail stopped?

Ans. Lencho’s soul was filled with sadness. What the storm had passed, he stood in the middle of the field. He told his son that even locusts would not bring about so much destruction. The hail had left nothing. He told them that year they would have no corn.

Q. Who or what did Lencho have faith in? What did he do?

Ans. All through the night, Lencho thought only of his one hope: the help of God. He had great faith in God as he could see and know everything. So he wrote a letter to God asking for help.

Q. Who read the letter?

Ans. Lencho had dropped the letter into the letter box. The postman took the letter to the postmaster. It was the postmaster who read Lencho’s letter addressed to God.

Q. What did the postmaster do then?

Ans. The postmaster was very much impressed by Lencho’s faith in God. He didn’t want his faith to be shaken. So he sent a letter to Lencho with some money in it.

Q. Was Lencho surprised to find a letter for him with money in it?

Ans. No, Lencho did not show the slightest surprise on seeing the money. Such was his confidence in God.

Q. What made him angry?

Ans. Lencho became angry when he counted the money. He had asked God to send him a hundred pesos. But he found only seventy pesos. He thought that the men in the post office had stolen thirty pesos. So he got angry.

Q. Who does Lencho have complete faith in? Which sentences in the story tell you this?

Ans. Lencho had complete faith in God. The following sentences in the story tell us this:

  1. There was a single hope: the help from God.
  2. God he wrote, ‘‘if you don’t help, my family and I will go hungry this year.’’
  3. Lencho showed not the slightest surprise on seeing the money; such was his confidence….
  4. ….. nor could he have denied Lencho what he had requested.

Q. Why does the postmaster send money to Lencho? Why does he sign the letter ‘God’?

Ans. The postmaster was very much impressed by Lencho’s faith in God. He didn’t want this faith to be shaken. So he sent the money to Lencho. He signed the letter ‘God’. In fact he wanted to give Lencho the impression that it was really God who had sent him the money. This way Lencho would continue to have faith in God.

Q. Did Lencho try to find out who had sent the money to him? Why/Why not?

Ans. No, Lencho did not try to find out who had sent the money to him. This was because he had firm faith in God. He thought that God had sent him the money. There was no doubt about it in his mind.

Q. Who does Lencho think has taken the rest of the money? What is the irony in the situation (Remember that the irony of a situation is an unexpected aspect of it. An ironic situation is strange or amusing because it is the opposite of what is expected.)

Ans. Lencho had asked God for a hundred pesos but he received seventy pesos. He thought that the post office employees had stolen the rest of the money. The irony in the situation is that it was the post office employees who had sent Lencho the money. He blamed those employees for having stolen the money. Not only this, he called them ‘a bunch of crooks’.

Q. Are there people like Lencho in the real world? What kind of a person would you say he is? You may select appropriate words from the box to answer the question.

greedy, naive, stupid, ungrateful, selfish, conical, unquestioning

Ans. People do have faith in God in the real world but not the kind of unquestioning faith that Lencho had. Lencho was a naive kind of person because he believed that his letter could reach God.

Q. There are two kinds of conflict in the story: between humans and nature, and between humans themselves. How are these conflicts illustrated?

Ans. The conflict between humans and nature is illustrated by the hailstones destroying Lencho’s crop. The conflict between humans themselves is illustrated by Lencho’s mistrust of the post office employees. They had helped him with money but he called them ‘a bunch of crooks’.

Q. There are different names in different parts of the world for storms, depending on their nature. Can you match the names in the box with their descriptions below, and fill in the blanks? You may use a dictionary to help you.

gale, whirlwind, cyclone, hurricane, tornado, typhoon

  1. A violent tropical storm in which strong winds move in a circle: _ _ c _ _ _ _
  2. An extremely strong wind: _ a _ _
  3. A violent tropical storm with very strong winds: _ _ p _ _ _ _
  4. A violent storm whose centre is a cloud in the shape of a funnel: _ _ _ n _ _ _
  5. A violent storm with very strong winds, especially in the western Atlantic Ocean: _ _ r _ _ _ _ _ _
  6. A very strong wind that moves very fast in a spinning movement and causes a lot of damage: _ _ _ _ l____

Answer

  1. Cyclone
  2. Gale
  3. Typhoon
  4. Tornado
  5. Hurricane
  6. Whirlwind

Q. Match the sentences in Column A with the meanings of ‘hope’ in Column B.

1. Will you get the subjects you want to study in college? I hope so.− a feeling that something good will probably happen
2. I hope you don’t mind my saying this, but I don’t like the way you are arguing− thinking that this would happen (It may or may not have happened.)
3. This discovery will give new hope to HIV/AIDS sufferers. − stopped believing that this good thing would happen
4. We were hoping against hope that the judges would not notice our mistakes.− wanting something to happen (and thinking it quite possible)
5. I called early in the hope of speaking to her before she went to school. − showing concern that what you say should not offend or disturb the other person: a way of being polite
6. Just when everybody had given up hope , the fishermen came back, seven days after the cyclone. − wishing for something to happen, although this is very unlikely

Answer

1. Will you get the subjects you want to study in college? I hope so.− wanting something to happen (and thinking it quite possible)
2. I hope you don’t mind my saying this, but I don’t like the way you are arguing− showing concern that what you say should not offend or disturb the other person: a way of being polite
3. This discovery will give new hope to HIV/AIDS sufferers. − a feeling that something good will probably happen
4. We were hoping against hope that the judges would not notice our mistakes.− thinking that this would happen (It may or may not have happened.)
5. I called early in the hope of speaking to her before she went to school. − wishing for something to happen, although this is very unlikely
6. Just when everybody had given up hope , the fishermen came back, seven days after the cyclone. − stopped believing that this good thing would happen

Q. Join the sentences given below using who, whom, whose, which, as suggested.

  1. I often go to Mumbai. Mumbai is the commercial capital of India (which)
  2. My mother is going to host a TV show on cooking. She cooks very well. (who)
  3. These sportspersons are going to meet the President. Their performance has been excellent. (whose).
  4. Lencho prayed to God. His eyes see into our minds. (whose)
  5. This man cheated me. I trusted him. (whom)

Answer

  1. I often go to Mumbai which is the commercial capital of India.
  2. My mother, who cooks very well, is going to host a TV show on cooking.
  3. The sportspersons whose performance has been excellent are going to meet the President.
  4. Lencho prayed to God, whose eyes see into our minds.
  5. The man whom I trusted cheated me.

Q. Find sentences in the story with negative words, which express the following ideas emphatically.

  1. The trees lost all their leaves.
  2. The letter was addressed to God himself.
  3. The postman saw this address for the first time in his career.

Answer

  1. Not a leaf remained on the trees.
  2. It was nothing less than a letter to God.
  3. Never in his career as a postman had he known that address.

Q. In pairs, find metaphors from the story to complete the table below. Try o say what qualities are being compared. One has been done for you.

Object Metaphor Quality or Feature Compared
Cloud Huge mountains The mass or ‘hugeness’of clouds
Raindrops
Hailstones
LocustsAn epidemic (a disease) that spreads ver rapidly and leaves many people dead
An ox of a man

Answer

Object Metaphor Quality or Feature Compared
Cloud Huge mountains The mass or ‘hugeness’ of clouds
RaindropsCoinsMoney that a good crop will bring
HailstonesFrozen pearlsBrightness of pearls
Locustsa plague of locustsAn epidemic (a disease)t hat spreads very rapidly and leaves many people dead
LenchoAn ox of a man strong

Q. Have you ever been in great difficulty, and felt that only a miracle could help you? How was your problem solved? Speak about this in class with your teacher.

Ans. Last July I was travelling by car from Delhi to Chandigarh. My father was driving the car and I was sitting beside him. It was a hot day. We had crossed Panipat and were going towards Karnal. Suddenly my father saw an oil tanker standing in the middle of the road about fifty metres away. The oil had leaked from the tanker and had slipped all over the road making it slippery. My father applied brakes to stop the car. But the car instead of stopping started slipping at great speed towards the tanker. I thought that our end was near and only a miracle could save us. But miracle did happen. A few feet away from the tanker, the car suddenly turned to the left and stopped after moving a few yards in the nearby fields.

Q. Listen to the letter (given under ‘In this Lesson’) read out by your teacher/on the audio tape. As you listen fill in the table given below:

The writer apologises (says sorry) because
The writer has sent this to the reader
The writer has sent it in the month of
The reason for not writing earlier
Sarah goes to
Who is writing to whom
Where and when were they last together?

Answer

The writer apologises (says sorry) becausehe could not write to her earlier
The writer has sent this to the readera birthday card
The writer has sent it in the month of November, 2008
The reason for not writing earlier the writer being very busy
Sarah goes to a school called ‘Little Feet’
Who is writing to whom Mohan to Sohan
Where and when were they last together? Delhi, in July 2008

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