Q) Describe a time when performing in front of a crowd. By Mahum Ali Awan

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With bated breath, I stood behind the thick red stage curtains that were shielding me from the bright flashes that would soon encompass me as soon as the barrier of fabric was pulled aside.

Hours of preparation could never gird my loins for what awaited me.

Ultimate humiliation. 

My stomach was in knots, making me wish I could keel over and puke my guts out. Unfortunately, I could not. 

I can duly confirm that a medical phenomenon took place in my abdomen, as I waited for my impending doom, when I felt my intestines twist and turn. Nausea arose, as the hefty drapes were pulled apart. I swallowed the lump in my throat, or rather, tried to swallow it but it seemed to have refused to go down. 

I focused on my surroundings in order to divert my attention from the unsettling thoughts in my head. 

The first to catch my eye was the nearly full theatre, which was not a good sight for my queasy middle. I looked down and focused hard on the floor sheets, which gave an unsuccessful impression of an authentic hardwood floor, which were peeling from the sides and caused a fellow cast mate of mine to trip over them. I suppressed a smile as I strained my eyes to admire the hues of brown on the ground.

Thump. Thump. Thump. 

The pulsations of the music synchronized with my racing heartbeat, creating an entirely new kind of tune. 

Beads of sweat slowly formed on my temples, a rather large one slid down from the middle of my forehead and went straight between my eyebrows, then it stopped slightly before speeding down the slope of my nose. 

My chest rose as I gulped down air in order to cool my overheated build and reduce the copious amount of perspiration that had collected on my face and neck. 

It was finally time for me to begin my performance, as indicated by the redolent looks given by the director, a mousy looking man who had a wispy mustache. 

I opened my mouth to speak, but nothing came out. I cleared my throat – once, twice, thrice – but it seemed my vocal cords had refused to cooperate. The director’s glare grew even more menacing just as my face began to burn and I turned to flee from the stage of my embarrassment.

About froebelianwriters

I am an English Language teacher teaching O'Levels Edexcel and CIE A Levels at Froebel's International School, Islamabad. I am also working as a Subject Specialist Literacy consultant for the same school. Writing and reading has always been a passion and I try my utmost to instill these habits and hobbies in my students as well. I can be reached/contacted at fabbas227@hotmail.com or 03365287335 Happy reading!

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