This is the touching story of 10-year-old Dil who is mildly retarded and also suffers from accelerated aging disease. But he is loved by both children and adults and they learn from him how to be better people.
One day, Doron and his friend Itai decide to get into the house of "the Witch," a lonely old lady who lives nearby. When she goes out shopping they creep into her house and to their surprise they discover a strange, deformed creature, part child, part old man. They`re sure that "the Witch" is raising a monster, but they soon find out that this is her son, a 10-year-old already doubly hit by fate. Paradoxically, Dil turns out to be a very friendly boy who loves people and animals, so the two boys befriend him and include him in their games. At first, the other neighborhood children are put off by the strange child, but then they accept him as their friend, and when the school year starts, Dil`s mother lets him go with them to the neighborhood school. Dil is happy to go, along with the crippled bird that he keeps in his pocket. Of course, some of the children bully him at first, but they soon come under his spell and he even becomes a role model: the other children hug one another, carry the teachers’ bags, raise birds and imitate Dil’s special way of talking. The height of "cool" is the "Ants` Walk" that Dil teaches them during recess. The Ants` Walk is walking on tiptoes so as not to step on ants, because they deserve to live too. At the end of the year, the principal gives Dil a medal of honor. A month later his condition gets much worse and he dies soon after. But Doron, the narrator, carries Dil`s memory with him and will never forget the message of the "Ants’ Walk."
Illustrations: Nurit Zarfaty