Daily Archives: January 23, 2016

Journalistic interview: “Taking on the world” by Mairaj Khalid

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Ellen: So! Shall we begin?

Interviewer: We already have! And I have to say that it is a pleasure to have a woman, such as you, for this interview.

E: The pleasure is mine.

I: The first thing I would like to ask is that, what compelled you to take on this journey?

E: As always, it is my love of sailing.

I: Ah! As others may have their own interests; yours is an interesting one. Also, during your voyage, it is known that something extraordinary occurred. I would like to know what had happened.

E: Well, this is the part of the ship, which required my utmost attention, for the ship’s mast was badly damaged and could only be repaired by attaching the new halyard right till the top of the mast. As you may know that a ninety foot tall mast, on a moving ship, is no easy job to climb.

I: A large task indeed, but surely you must have had some equipment to help you in this climb and; also, planned it before you attempted it.

E: Indeed I did! For with them, I took well over four hours to complete this job, who knows how I would have taken without them. I spent the night before the climb, preparing myself with what I could, such as taking certain tools, mouse lines for safety and other things that might come in handy. I also planned for hours on how to effectively use the halyard by its placement on the ground.

I: Safety first I would say, but did you still encounter difficulties during your climb and did you overcome them?

E: Many problems came during that climb, mostly which originated from the ship knocking against waves, which at times, almost sent me falling off the mast, made me lose almost all my tools, and getting the halyard stuck for a while, during the middle of the climb. Though, these problems were hard to overcome; I never lost my determination, and forced myself to complete this task with a single thought, “Not far now, kiddo…”

I: Through determination and maybe some luck, can we achieve our goals. Though, what did you feel after completing the job on the mast, and when you came down?

E: At both I felt tired and weary, but the only difference was that the job was incomplete, until I got down, as that is what I thought, “Not until you reach the deck, kiddo…”

I: It seems that it is time to put this interview at an end, and once again I must thank you for agreeing to it. Also will you be continuing your sea adventures?

E: Welcome, and you will be seeing me back on the ship again!

‘If it was not for that lone tree, I would…’ by Roha Khan

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I looked down. The beast was jumping up and down, clawing to gain ground but to no avail. My heart was in my mouth and blood was pumping in my ears. My head was swirling and the earth seemed to be bouncing up and down. I wanted to close my eyes but I refused to give up to the darkness that was ready to engulf me….

I was out for my evening walk. The weather was nice, the sky was clear; everything was in order. It was the time when most people used to be out for a walk.

There were very few trees in the neighborhood, but one of them was very tall. It had a huge canopy and gave you the impression that it was dominant. It had always creeped me out so I stayed away from it, but today’s events proved otherwise.

There was a mad dog that used to roam area. It was a huge black beast with gleaming eyes. We were all told to keep away from it and there was no telling me twice- I was scared of that thing.

So I was walking, minding my own business, with not a concern in my mind. Why should I? The weather was cool, no clouds, no homework, and no test; so why not enjoy life while you could?

But my enjoyment was drilled out of me when I turned a corner. The idea of spending the rest of my life in harmony came to an end in a jiffy: standing right before me was the black dog, teeth bared, eyes wide, ready to pounce on me.

I always thought that if I ever faced such a situation would be unable to move. So I surprised even myself when I felt adrenaline coursing through me. I looked at the beast once and took off, flying as if I had grown wings.

I ran as fast as I could but the beast was still gaining on me fast. Soon I would be in his clutches. I pictured the whole scene: he will pounce on me from behind and take me down. I will try to fight but he will claw, scratch, and bite me. Then I will die before anyone will find me; such bright thoughts for a fifteen-year-old. Maybe it was because of all the depressing movies and novels.

But yes, these were my thoughts as I ran. Then I saw the ‘tree’ in front of me. First I felt dread. Okay, the tree looked haunted, and the beast was nearly on me. My energy was failing fast and I was fatigued.

Hmm, I choose getting frightened to death by ghosts rather than getting eaten alive by a crazy dog. So I started to scale the tree just as the beast scratched my heels. It took my shoe away but I did not care.

The initial burst of adrenaline was over, leaving me tired and shivering. The dog patrolled the base of the tree and would not go away. So I decided to wait it out and camp in the tree. The ghosts can go and find themselves a new tree.

But I was scared and dizzy, and I knew I would fall any second if I loosened my grip. After a while my brother came looking for me. He assessed the situation, picked up a stone and attacked the dog. It ran away. I was so joyful that I jumped….

So now I am in bed, with broken ribs, a dislocated elbow and a sprained ankle. Yes, I am totally enjoying life with bed rest for two months.