Family dream threatened,
friends will get him through it.
Delivering groceries for the family store isn’t what Karthik had planned for the summer before high school, but during this bad economy in 2008, maybe it will help.
At least he’s not stuck indoors studying for the SAT like big sister. She will be the lawyer, he will be the doctor, his Indian-American parents have decided (Mom’s dream job, not his – Karthik gets woozy at the sight of blood…).
Big orders or small, his bike carries them all – to old Mr. Jain who loves to talk about cricket scores, to the lady who always orders two extra-ripe mangoes, to the college student who’s writing a play and wants Karthik in the role of Leonard Bernstein as a young man!
Who knew that the famous musician and conductor grew up here in their Boston suburb? Shanthi is sure that Karthik’s gift for perfectly remembering long lists will help him memorize the short script; he’s not so sure that his parents will let him perform for her final exam in August.
Between deliveries, he meets his friends Miles and Binh for ice cream (he knows all 50 flavors) while hoping cute classmate Juhi comes in without the bullies she hangs out with now (not likely).
The more he studies the script and Bernstein’s life and music, the more the teen identifies with this son of immigrants who went on to do great things – but what does Karthik want to do with his life?
As he delivers their groceries, Karthik gets to know his customers and helps when they need a hand – what will they do if the store can’t keep going?
Oh no! It’s Juhi’s uncle who owns new chaat restaurant whose fast-fast food is stealing away the little grocery store’s customers – is this West Side Story all over again?
Happy book birthday to Karthik Delivers – let’s hope he tells his family about the play sooner rather than later!
What dream have you put on hold? When will you launch it again?