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We are not afraid to die

  Hornbill - Lesson 2 We're Not Afraid To Die . . . if We Can All Be Together - Gordon Cook And Alan East Glossary, Summary, Questions, ...

 Hornbill - Lesson 2

We're Not Afraid To Die . . .

if We Can All Be Together - Gordon Cook And Alan East

Glossary, Summary, Questions, and Answers

Glossary -

1. honing our seafaring skills - sharpening skills to travel through the sea.

2. pinpricks in the vast ocean - the search for two small islands in the vast ocean.

3. ominous silence - something unpleasant is going to happen. 

4. a tousled head - untidy and looks as if it has not been brushed or combed.

5. mayday calls -signal distress in radio communications

6. voyage - an adventurous journey through the sea

7. hull - the body of the ship

8. leg - phase

9. crewmen - a group of people working on the ship 

10. gales - winds

11. atrocious - extremely bad

12. gigantic - extremely big

13. jib - small sail

14. mooring - an act of making fast a boat

15. double-lashed - hit something

16. donned oilskins - an oiled waterproof cloth or raincoat

17. stern - the backend of the ship

18. torrent - strong blow of water

19. capsizing - to turn over the water

20. taut - very tight

21. scrambled - to climb quickly

22. Bulged - to fill up with something

23. sloshed - drunk, submerged

24. bunk - birth

25. starboard - side of the ship

26. dinghies - a small boat you sail

27. keel - a long piece of wood at the bottom of the ship

28. abated - to minimize power

29. rigging - the system of rope to support the mast

30. respite - short rest

31. heave - to lift

32. paraffin - a type of oil

33. sextant - an instrument for measurement

34. slits - to become small

35. caricatures - to make a picture

36. stark - rough, hard

37. bleak - barren having less vegetation, not attractive

38. Direst - great

39. crucial- very important

40. optimistic -hopeful

Summary - the lesson, "We're not afraid to die if we can all be together" is written by the explorer and writers Gordon Cook and Alan East. In July 1976, the narrator- a 37-year-old businessman, his wife Mary, son Jonathan, and daughter Suzanne set sail from Plymouth, England to duplicate the round-the-voyage made by Captain James Cook, through 23 meters, 30-ton wooden-hulled beauty, "Wavewalker", Their first phase of the journey was pleasant but suddenly the weather changed very drastically and their boat was struck by a gigantic wave and the boat was filled by the water with a lot of damage to it, but they did not lose hope, they did every possible effort like pumping water from the boat, lowering the speed by sailing with another method, covering of the starboard with the help of two crewmen, Larry Vigil, and Herb Seigler, and finally able to reach Amerstadam island safely.

Understanding the text -

1. List the steps taken by the captain

a) to protect the ship when rough weather began.

Ans - As the ship rose to the top of each wave we could see endless enormous seas rolling towards us, and the screaming of the wind and spray was painful to the ears. To slow the boat down, we dropped the storm jib and lashed a heavy mooring rope in a loop across the stern. Then we double-lashed everything, went through our life-raft drill attached lifelines, donned oilskins and life jackets - and waited.

b) to check the flooding of the water in the ship.

Ans - When a gigantic water wave struck the "wave walker" with a great roar, the ship almost capsized and got flooded with water. The crewmen Larry and Herb started pumping water from the ship and the captain stretched canvas and secured waterproof hatch covers across the gaping holes. Still, the problem became worse when the hand pumps were blocked and the electric pump short-circuited, but luckily the captain found another electric pump. With the help of that, they continuously pumped the water from the ship till the January 3 morning, and in this way, the captain with the help of crewmembers checked the flooding of the water in the ship.

2. Describe the mental condition of the voyagers on 4 and 5 January.

Ans - On 4 January, they were continuously fighting against extremely bad weather and damage occurred to the "wave walker", They continuously pumped the water to minimize the water level, but still they were not in the position to sail on the main mast because of the fear that pressure on the rope system would pull the damaged section of the hull apart, so hoisted storm jib and headed towards where the possibility of islands and they had their first snacks in two days and rested for a while. Unfortunately, the situation became worse on 5 January, but they were united and strongly determined to reach the islands and his son's words motivated them as he said, "We are not afraid to die if we can all be together".

3. Describe the shifts in the narration of the events as indicated in the three sections of the text. Give a substile to each section.

Ans - The writer had very well-shifted narrations as the lesson progressed because they started the voyage with peace and ended with contentment, joy, and satisfaction. The first phase of the journey of 105,100 Km from Africa to  Cape Town was pleasant, but the second phase became worse as the wave walker was damaged because of striking a gigantic wave, but they were determined and united and fought the situation bravely and courageously, they didn't give up and finally, when they reached the island Amsterdam, they again filled with joy and satisfaction.

Talking about the text -

1. What difference did you notice between the reactions of the adults and the children when faced with danger?

Ans - I noticed the complete difference in the reaction of the adults and children. The adults realized the situation clearly and felt the possible outcome that would be. They immediately started their precautions like providing life jackets, lowering the speed, repairing damaged parts of the ship, and pumping water from the ship, even Mary took responsibility for the wheel, meaning all the adults were fighting with the bad weather continuously and on the other the children were silent and not active, but their contribution was worthy enough, Sue did not bother about her swollen head and did not disturb the father and the captain and the son Jonathan inspired him with his words.

2. How does the story suggest that optimism helps to endure, "the direst stress"?

Ans - Truly, this story is an excellent example of how to remain optimistic and hopeful in case of a very tough situation and continuous efforts could remove us from an adverse condition. They made all the possible efforts they could do, and not complain about the apparatus they did not have they pumped the water with the help of hand pumps for continuous 36 hours, Mary took the position at the wheel and the narrator was continuously taken every possible effort like lowering speed, making different calculations, covering the starboard and finally survived on the safe land of the island. They never lose hope, courage, united efforts, and a positive attitude.

3. What lesson do we learn from such hazardous experiences when we are face-to-face death?

Ans - We can learn many lessons from such a death-like experience.

1. They did not care or complain about what they were not having but concentrated and used what they were having. In such a drastic situation every single tool matters.

2. They took collective responsibility, so the work got divided.

3. They kept their nerves, remained hopeful and optimistic in an adverse situation, and tried to complement each other, in such cases unity becomes the most desirable wisdom.

4. They strongly believed in others and did not interfere with them.

5. And lastly a strong determination, steady and continuous efforts, decision-making quality, belief, and courage could turn adverse situations into favorable conditions.

4. Why do you think people undertake such adventurous expeditions despite the risks involved?

Ans - I think there are many reasons why people undertake such adventurous expeditions despite the great risks involved like for name and fame, passion to achieve something great in life, excitation, thrill, exploring human hidden potential, self-examination, testing of the knowledge or skill gained or may be many more. It depends from person to person, his priorities in life, but one thing is sure any explorer or adventurous person goes for it with due and proper preparation. On this voyage also came across that they had spent about 16 years sharpening their seafaring skills. Some of the explorers might think that they are going to prove themselves as torchbearers for the generations to follow. It is also true that had the Colombus not been explored, we wouldn't have been able to see America because after witnessing their experience we come to know the do's and not to-do's.


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