Mashal and the happy man story



This fun story is by Mashal and his English tutor in America. Mashal is from Afghanistan and is a newer student of English. This is the first story Mashal has ever written in English. He was learning ways to use the word “how”.  Congratulations and welcome, Mashal!

ONCE there was a man who liked the word “how”.  One day he said to a boy named Mashal, “Hello!  How are you?”

     Mashal said, “I am fine. Thank you! How are you?” 

     The man said, “I am fine. Thank you! How is your sister?”  

     “My sister is fine. Thank you!” 

     “I’m glad,” said the man. “How is school?”

     “School is good. Thank you.” 

     “That’s good!” said the man.  “How is the weather?”

     “The weather is cloudy.”

     “Oh, I’m sorry! I hope the sun returns soon. How are your friends?”

     “My friends are happy. Thank you.” 

     “It’s good to have happy friends,” said the happy man.  

     Then the man said,

“How do you say ‘hello’ in Chinese?”
“How big is the sun?”
“How many minutes are there in 1 year?”
“How many teeth do you have?”
“How many languages are there in the world?”


     Mashal said, “How long will you ask me questions?!” But then Mashal had an idea. I will ask him questions!  So Mashal said, “How many friends do you have? 

     The man said, “I have very many friends. Even I cannot count them.”                                                                                

     “How many brothers and sisters do you have?”                                

     The man said, “I have three brothers and two sisters.”

     “How many uncles do you have?   

     “I have two uncles. My little uncle is a doctor and my big uncle is a teacher.”                                       

     “How many boys do you have?” asked Mashal.                                                        

     The man said, “I have two boys. My little boy is three-years-old. My big boy is eighteen-years-old.”                                                               

       Then Mashal thought, “How can I stop this? This happy man likes to talk a lot!”  Then Mashal had one more idea.  He said, “How nice to meet you! Good-bye!”  

       The happy man said, “Good-bye!”                       

       This is how you end a conversation with someone who likes the word “how”. 

 ©InterestEng. July 2013 - July 2021 §  The stories in the magazine portion of the site are written by English language learners. Stories are corrected by a native English speaker.  § Photos are staff photos or used with permission.  §  To contact us: