In ‘‘Rikki- Tikki-Tavi" by Rudyard Kipling, how does Rikki get to the bungalow?

Expert Answers

An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

The best place to start looking for the answer to this question is the third paragraph of the story. This paragraph tells readers that a high summer flood washes Rikki-tikki out of his burrow and carries him down a roadside ditch. Rikki-tikki clings on to anything he can find in an effort to prevent himself from drowning, and his efforts exhaust him to the point where he passes out. When Rikki-tikki finally regains consciousness, he is in the middle of a garden path in bright sun. This is when Teddy shouts out,

Here's a dead mongoose. Let's have a funeral.

Fortunately for Rikki-tikki, Teddy's mother thinks that the mongoose might not be dead. She suggests that they dry him off and give him a closer look. Teddy, his mother, and his father take Rikki-tikki into the house, wrap him in warm blankets, and set him by the fire. Rikki-tikki eventually wakes up and becomes the curious and fierce mongoose that decades of readers have come to know and love:

"There are more things to find out about in this house," he said to himself, "than all my family could find out in all their lives. I shall certainly stay and find out."

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team
An illustration of the letter 'A' in a speech bubbles

Rikki-Tikki-Tavi, the mongoose in Rudyard Kipling's story, originally lived in a burrow with his father and mother. One day a summer storm washes him away from his home. The rushing water carries him into a roadside ditch. At first he is conscious during this flood, but at some point he loses consciousness. That's when the boy, Teddy, finds him. Teddy thinks the animal is dead, and he plans to conduct a funeral for him. But his mother thinks he might be alive and suggests they take him back to their bungalow to dry him off. So they bring him in from the garden path onto which he has washed up and dry him off in the big house. The man determines he isn't dead, merely "half-choked." They wrap him in a cotton cloth and get him warm, and he sneezes himself awake. 

Approved by eNotes Editorial Team

We’ll help your grades soar

Start your 48-hour free trial and unlock all the summaries, Q&A, and analyses you need to get better grades now.

  • 30,000+ book summaries
  • 20% study tools discount
  • Ad-free content
  • PDF downloads
  • 300,000+ answers
  • 5-star customer support
Start your 48-Hour Free Trial