The “roti and curry” song

From Anshi’s desk……

Roti, roti,

Never much naan when we go roti,

I pray to have a nice curry,

I pray, I pray,

And that’s why  I need some white rice,

And a helping of curry,

Every time that I go,

I keep taking more till I explode !!!!!

My first taste of the “Indoor League” competition

It was an ordinary Sunday morning for most people. However, for me, it was a very special and exciting day. I had been waiting for this day to take place for the past few weeks. It was the first match of the Indoor League and I was feeling fairly nervous about whether I would play well though! I felt as if there was a huge procrastination for the match to being but, according to the match schedule, we had started on time.

I felt as if there was a huge procrastination for the match to begin, but, according to the match schedule, we had started on time.

Bowling the first over

As always, my Captain decided that I should bowl the first over. So I took the ball from the Coach and slowly walked towards my bowling crease – with an air of nervousness around me. I looked at the batsman who played for the local county. However, I knew he hated in swing and could not face it, so – as I was running into bowl, I had my eye on the off-stump. With the seam facing slightly towards the right-hand side; as I ran in with full pace and a spring in my step I angled my arm in slightly so that the seam would swing in even more. The ball landed in line with the off-stump and moved in, so as to be in line with the middle stump. The batsmen tried to play straight drive and top edged it, and it went soaring into the air like an aeroplane taking off. There was no reason to worry though, as our wicket-keeper has an extremely reliable pair of hands in situations such as this. Five seconds later, the ball was in his gloves. I was elated at the fact that on the first ball I had taken the first wicket. I could not believe my eyes! The batsman was walking back to the pavilion. The second ball was a dot ball (the batsman did not score a run). However, the third ball was another good ball and the batsman chipped the ball up straight to mid-on who took a simple catch. And then, on the final ball, I decided to bowl a yorker, bowling as fast as I could. The decision paid off and I was rewarded with another wicket.

My first experience of batting in the “Indoor League” Competition

I walked into bat at number 4 – my favourite position to bat in, after opening – and was facing an easy spinner who I knew would bowl a few wides which would gain me at least 2 runs. The ball pitched off the pitch – a massive wide – and barely spun in, passing the outside edge of my bat. I was given two runs – as the rules of the Indoor League differ from the outdoor rules. The next ball was again a wide giving me another two runs. However, I believe, there was a controversial decision which proclaimed me out. It began like this. The ball was a wide and my back foot was well inside the crease – or so I thought – and the ball rebounded off the right-hand glove of the wicket-keeper and hit the stumps – supposedly being a stumping. However, first of all, I thought that the ball had to be in the wicket-keeper’s glove to complete a stumping. However, in this occasion, the ball had rebounded off the glove of the wicket keeper and had hit the stumps, when – my second point, I was sure my backfoot was deep inside the crease. And so I was given out stumped for four runs. So I reluctantly returned to the pavilion. I was extremely indignant about this controversial decision – but, I could not review this decision or argue against the umpire’s controversial decision, but, I was supported and sympathised by the members of my team, who agreed with me about this odd decision.

Celebrating the first win of the season

However, even though I was dismissed for only four runs, the other members of our team batted extremely well and we comfortably managed to win the game. It was a moment of great elation for all of my team and there was screaming and shouting all around!!! I was extremely satisfied with my bowling performance – as I contributed three wickets, however, there was still a lot to be desired with my batting and I knew I would have to make a comeback with it if I wanted my place to remain in the team.

Winter

From Anshi’s desk……

Winter is a time…

Winter is a time when all the freezing parents rush home to be invited by their loving children and a warm fire. A time when all the animals take a well-earned rest after working so hard during the Summer, Spring and Autumn. It is a time when the plants disappear under the ground and replacing them – snow. It is a time when people receive presents(Christmas) from a rather large, plump man with a huge sack, sleigh and reindeer – or so we assume. It is a time when we celebrate the end of the year with a party, fireworks, a countdown and friends. Winter is a magical time where people rejoice in harmony.

Winter is also a sign that Spring is returning, and when it does the animals will awaken from their deep slumber and return to their laborious jobs.

However, Winter is not perfect. The dull, grey clouds fill the day with gloom, making sure that all children wishing to go outside are restricted. The once green canopy covering the branches of the leaves, fall away onto the floor leaving the poor trees bare and cold.

Winter is a time when many people sit inside, on a cold night, by the heart of a warm fire drinking a steaming hot mug of coca. What a perfect time! However, during the mundane day, people laze about with a feeling of gloom inside. How boring!

Winter is a time when people rejoice and laze. What else can we do!

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The Exhilaration of getting a mobile phone!!

From Anshi’s desk…..

Have you ever been in a situation where everyone you know –nearly all your friends – have a mobile phone?

If you have, then you will know, that you feel completely isolated from the rest of the world. It feels as if you’re the only one who can’t talk to people when there not in the same room as you. I have been through this for many painful years, however, now I can hold my head up high and say that I have social media and a mobile phone.

What does Social Media mean to me? 

To me, Social Media is the extraordinary tool which facilitates being in touch with your friends and family at the press of a button. The excellence of hearing the voice of a close member of your family who has moved away. This is what I feel Social Media is. However, Social Media can have its downsides. For example, someone could access your account and get all your personal information……well potentially!!!

That is just one of the many reasons why you should be careful on Social Media sites.

When I got a mobile phone 

When I got a mobile phone; I was returning from school when my Dad gave me a rectangular box.

I was perplexed!!! I was wondering why he suddenly gave me this box. Then everyone told me to open it. So – beaming with excitement – I opened it. As soon as I saw what was in there, I was filled with exhilaration, quicker than the speed of sound.

 Although I felt like this on the inside – on the outside I had to remain composed as I am a mature young boy. As soon as I got to school, the next day I added all my friends’ phone numbers onto my phone.

Now I always try to keep my smartphone fully charged and treat it with the “utmost” respect.

 I hoped you enjoyed reading this blog post and I hope you read the many yet to be published!

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My book review of “Wonder” by R.J Palacio

From Anshi’s desk……….

Wonder, R.J Palacio’s debut book, is set around a 10-year-old boy called August “Auggie”. August is not an ordinary boy, not in the sense that he has many idiosyncrasies, but in the sense that he doesn’t look very ordinary. August Pullman was born with mandibulofacial dysostosis, which makes his face appear deformed. His eyes are placed in the middle of his cheeks, his ears are little holes in the side of his head, although he can surprisingly hear from them. In most cases people whose ears aren’t properly formed are deaf, however, Auggie can hear – with some difficulty – which resulted in him wearing bionic hearing aids. August has a few childhood friends which he has known since he was a baby. He is really close to his childhood friends and even though one of them moved away to Bridgeport(Christopher) August and his family still manage to come over to Christopher’s home a few times a year – mostly on traditional occasions – and August and Christopher have a blast!!! Of course, Auggie has more friends but, they aren’t as close to him as Christopher. They are mainly the kind of people that you get along with, despite the fact that he had been invited to their parties, he hadn’t seen them in a long time.

August has been homeschooled for his entire life, but at the age of 10, his Mum decided that she could only teach him a limited amount and that if he were to go to school his knowledge would expand greatly. So one day whilst August was playing with Christopher  his mother was discussing the idea with Christopher’s mother. Unfortunately for Isabel (August’s mother), August overheard the word school and rushed into the room. “What were you talking about ? ” he questioned with an interrogating voice.                           “Auggie, do you think you’re ready for school ? ” Isabel answered and questioned at the same time. “No!”, August replied decisively.                                                                                            “You should tell him what you were thinking, Isabel,” said Nate(August’s father) nervously.”Auggie, I can only teach you so much, you know how bad I am at fractions,” she said with a melancholy facial expression. August hated the idea of him having to go to school, but deep down he knew she was right, Mom really was terrible at fractions.

I believe that the story revolves around August – the main character – a special child who is trying to live an ordinary life at fit into society and, like most of us when starting a new school – make friends.

This story is based on reality as R.J Palacio’s and her own sons saw a boy who was facially different. So I believe that – after reading this book – we should treat all people mutually no matter what they look like or who they are.

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Finding the perfect job/career

I have spent many days trying to contemplate what the ideal job/career for me could be. I spent hours completing career tests that I thought would help me find my dream job. It is only now that I finally realize that it is extraneous to try to find your perfect job using tests on websites. The reason for this is: It takes a person to create a website; so how can a person tell what your job should be? See it just doesn’t make sense that someone who doesn’t know you should tell you what to become. Now I am just focusing on the present and not looking too ahead into the future. I know that this blog post was a short one but I just wanted to tell you that you should not be to decisive on what you want to become – focus on your studies and what is important to you and you will automatically find the perfect job. Or if you already have a job than focus on that.
 

My first trip to Wales

Anshi’s desk…

This story begins at my house…….. It was an ordinary Friday; I had just arrived from my weekly cricket training session to find my entire family packing their suitcases. I was bemused! I was trying to comprehend why everyone was packing; it wasn’t as if we were going anywhere this half-term. So I decided to ask my Mum. After, I had heard what she said I could not stop smiling – I was extremely elated to hear that we were going on a family holiday to Aberystwyth in Wales!!!

Off to Wales

The journey to Wales was tiresome and tedious; however, this was no surprise as Wales is situated on the other side of the country. However, we did have a few breaks, and once we had arrived in Wales, we took a wrong turn and ended up taking a long de-tour of Snowdonia, but it didn’t matter as we were surrounded by the beautiful scenery of the Welsh mountains. The mountains appeared speckled with white spots on them – from afar -guess what! these were sheep grazing all over them. Eventually, we did arrive in Aberystwyth and that was the main thing.

The visit to the Castle  

Once we had arrived, we were warmly greeted by Mausaji (my maternal Uncle), who asked us – if we weren’t too tired – and whether we would like to go to the beach. Well, the proposition seemed far too exciting to refuse……so, we all immediately agreed and decided we would visit the local beach after a quick break and of course a cuppa tea for my parents. Once we were all refreshed, we headed towards the beach. We arrived and completely forgot about the beach, as we gazed in awe at a majestic (though partly dilapidated) castle. Its is known as the “Aberystwyth Castle”. A major tourist attraction in this part of the world.We decided to abandon the beach and go to the castle instead. Once we arrived at the top of the hill, as the castle was located at the top of a steep hill, we looked down and before our eyes there appeared a magnificent view.

People were  lying on the soft sand of the beach, whilst others were  plunging into the sea and a few were indulging themselves in a barbeque on the beach.

The adventure at the Castle

My little sister and I had a small adventure at the castle. I’m sure, if you ask her she will give you a long and detailed description….. which might be a bit exaggerated, so let me describe it for you. Little sis’ and I like exploring, so we decided to take a look around the castle. It was at this moment of time, when I stumbled upon something spectacular. Lo behold….I had found a secret passageway!!!! I noticed a little hole in a wall that looked like it had been created by bombs hitting it (the Castle had been used as a base during a war.) So, I decided to take a look and I found a set of spiral stairs leading into darkness. I climbed up filled with excitement but also a bit scared as I slowly crept, engulfed by the darkness. I came to the top of one of the four towers. It was a momentous and adventurous occasion and I shall always treasure it’s memories!!!

The toy Train

The next day we decided to ride on a toy train. We arrived at the Vale of Rheidol which is the train station for the toy train. We quickly bought the tickets and hopped onto the train with a spring in our step. It was now when Timmy got frightened. Since the train was a steam train when the driver was about to go he would blow the whistle notifying all the passengers that he was going, however, Timmy’s ears did not find this sound pleasant at all. She screamed in shock and ran as fast as her little legs would carry her to me. Now, being next to me, she wasn’t scared so we had an amazing time. The views that we saw were magnificent, there were mountains surrounding us with one odd house in the middle of nowhere. Once we had arrived at the next station we had 2 hours to spare till the train that took us back home, so Mausaji took us to this place where you had to climb down a mountain (there were steps although they were extremely steep and jagged so it was very difficult) right next to a waterfall and then – once you had reached the bottom you had to climb back up on the other side of the mountain next to the same waterfall and that to it felt like we were in a jungle as all that the eye could see was trees. We were beleaguered by trees!!!  It was very difficult and I got frightened quite a bit. Going down was very hard, especially Jacobs Ladder, there were a set of steep steps leading to a path at the bottom. It was so petrifying that I could not let go of the rail!! But my Mum was terrific she did at lightning speed and didn’t even hold on!!!! It was miraculous. We have many photos so if you would like to see them, you would have to speak to my Dad!

The trip to the lake

Our trip to the lake was amazing however, I had an encounter with a sheep that was so hilarious that you would not stop laughing P.S: I am now an enemy of sheep. We all wanted to see as much of the amazing Welsh scenery as possible so, we went to a beautiful lake – in Machynlleth – that was surrounded by mountains. There was one mountain that looked more majestic than the others and I eagerly wanted to try to climb it. But, climbing a mountain is not as easy as it seems, it is exceptionally hard, but anyway, I climbed over a fence and started to climb. I reached a fair distance when… I saw it… the sheep. Immediately after I had seen the sheep my Dad insisted I touch it. I was terrified!!! I had only ever touched a sheep in farms when they were inside a fence; I approached it cautiously trying as hard as I could to make sure it couldn’t hear me. But it spun round and stared at me with its black beady eyes. I immediately decided that I didn’t want to climb the mountain anymore, and with other sheep approaching I swiftly climbed down the mountain and leapt over the fence (that separated the mountain from the rest of the area) as quickly as I could.

King Arthur’s labyrinth

Our visit to King Arthur’s labyrinth was absolutely amazing! There was no other way to describe it. We decided to go there specifically because, my school play was based on King Arthur. Once we had arrived we went to the reception to book our tickets. Whilst my parents, and Mausaji, were occupied buying the tickets I decided to take a look at the sword Excalibur. It was exactly the same as the one’s I had seen on television. Now it was time to go to the boat which would take us to the labyrinth. We arrived to find a huge boat and with it a man dressed as a ghost, he was to be our guide. The boat took us deep under the mountain and we arrived at the labyrinth. Then, we heard many stories about how King Arthur became king. I also found that, as a boy, Merlin was kidnapped; he was kidnapped because people thought he had magic powers, which of course, he did, but, at that time he had know clue that he had any powers. So, Merlin tried with all his might to make something happen but nothing came. But then, something did happen, he foretold that one day there would be a King named Arthur who would save England. So, the men didn’t kill him. And since then Merlin found he had more powers than just telling the future – he could do magic!!! Our guide also told us that the labyrinth that we were stood in had once been a mine and over 10, 000 people used to work there. The mine is 28 miles long so he made extremely clear to keep up otherwise we would be difficult to find. It was an amazing experience and I shall always remember it.

So folk, that was a complete recount of my trip to Wales;  I hope you enjoyed reading it as much as I enjoyed the adventurous experience!!!!

Idiosyncrasy – it’s meaning is deeper than you think

From Anshi’s Desk ….

It was another ordinary, uneventful weekend, when I came across an unorthodox word – “Idiosyncrasy”.

According to the Oxford dictionary the meaning of “idiosyncrasy” is when a person or A thing has an unusual or unique habit, feature or way of behaving, but I believe that it is not that unornamented.

For example ” One of his little idiosyncrasies was always preferring to be in the car first.”After reading this, I thought I had grasped the nuances of the meaning of this word. So, I tried to come up with my own sentence using the word idiosyncrasy, however it was in vain as the usage was incorrect.

So I decided to explore the usage of this word that simply fascinated me -idiosyncrasy. One example involved repeating words that were spoken – “Her worst idiosyncrasy involved repeating back every word that was said to her”.

Another example involved a man with a rather peculiar habit – “While my father had many peculiar habits, his biggest idiosyncrasy was collecting his own toenail clippings”. That one was particularly disgusting !!!

Yet another example included a boys reaction to oranges – “Because of his idiosyncrasy to oranges, Franklin got a small rash every time he drank orange juice”.  There were many more,  as you may have noticed there are a large variety of uses for the word idiosyncrasy.

So much so, that I have written a blog post about it. After all this research about the word idiosyncrasy, I finally constructed my own sentence using the word. My sentence was” George’s biggest idiosyncrasy was the amount of water he drank at meal times. “

In conclusion the meaning of idiosyncrasy is when a person or object has a unorthodox habit, reaction, feature or way of behaving. I hope you have grasped the nuances of the word Idiosyncrasy and hope you will use it in the future.

When I became the “Mayor” for a day!!!

From Anshi’s desk…..

It all started a while back, 6 months ago to be precise. It was the end of yet another ordinary day at school, when suddenly, I looked up from my book, which I was deeply engrossed in, to find a leaflet lying on my desk. It was announcing a competition about writing a letter about becoming Mayor of the town for one day and what you would do if this happened. As soon as I read this, I was full of elation and was keen to begin my letter as soon as I had arrived home. I was struggling for ideas; my Nanu (Grandfather) was visiting and since he has a lot of wisdom, I asked him for advice. He gave me a few ideas as did my Dad. I can guarantee that without their support and assistance achieving this magnificent opportunity would have been a bit difficult. Giving credit where it is due….. hahaha!

To my absolute delight, I did win the competition and was chosen- alongside three others- from a number of participants to be the Mayor for one day…..yoohooo!!!

The eve before my reign as Mayor I can well remember, not being able to think about anything other than what would happen the next day. Excited I was indeed!!!

Finally …….I’m Mayor today:-

The next morning, it was a bright and summery day and I could not wait to govern as Mayor; I was bursting with exhilaration. As we entered the local District Council Office we- my Dad and I- were warmly greeted by the Mayor’s secretary. She took me and three other winners  (junior Mayors) of the competition to the mayor’s parlour. As we entered, I gazed at my surroundings and was astonished to see so many prestigious items, including:

The golden Mast carried by the Beadle (Mayor’s bodyguard) to usher people out of the Mayor’s path.

The silver stick used by the Mayor to walk with.

And the golden necklace worn by the Mayor to ceremonial events such as: the opening of a new business.

There also seemed to be an abundance of antique furniture in the parlour. Later in the day, I asked the Mayor why this was and he said it was because in the olden times the town’s main trade used to be making furniture and all the furniture in the Mayor’s chamber was donated by the many craftsmen who made them.

High Wycombe – A twinned town:-

The Mayor explained the  history of our town to us. He told us that it was twinned with a place called “Kelkheim”- a small town in Germany which is near Frankfurt. It was interesting because when on a sign near my town it said ” High Wycombe twinned with Kelkheim”, but I never understood what it actually meant!

Recently, The Mayor and 20 other people visited Kelkheim, stayed with German families and were shown around the town. The Mayor said that in a few months’ time the Mayor of Kelkheim and twenty other people would stay with English families and be shown around just as they did to the English. The reason behind this was because if there was to be a war you would require as many allies as possible. He also informed us that in 1974 the Mayor’s powers were removed and distributed amongst the District Council, hence from then onwards the Mayor became entirely ceremonial and just promoted the town. Therefore, he said if had a complaint to make we should not cavil to him but to the District Council.

Weighing of the Mayor:-

After that activity it was the weighing ceremony. This unorthodox tradition is only done in one place in the world….my town!!! This tradition was followed to see if the Mayor was squandering the townsfolk’s money on himself or using it for good purposes such as: maintaining local parks. At the inauguration of each Mayor’s reign the crier, the person who would shout out the weight of the Mayor, would weigh the Mayor, then at the end of his reign he would, once again, be weighed; if he had put on weight it meant that he had been dissipating the money on himself- a mistake that was paid for dearly as the townsfolk would throw rotten tomatoes and eggs at him. If the Mayor had not put on weight then the townsfolk would praise him. However, in recent times this ritual is not taken as seriously as the Mayor has become entirely ceremonial.

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Learning about the rich history of High Wycombe certainly puts up a huge appetite and at the exactly at that time it was time for lunch. My parents were invited to join us and this being a once in a lifetime opportunity they did come. We had a delicious meal of “Jimmy’s Pizza” of which I had three slices.

Visit to the street market:-

After lunch the Beadle put on my “Mayor” robes, as I was chosen to be the Mayor, and we went into to the high street – the street market, where we talked to the local businessmen. My particular favourite was a business run by a man called Nathan, he was extremely jolly and I had a lot of fun talking to him. We asked him how his business was doing and if there was anything he would covet from the Mayor. The reason we did this was that in the olden days the Mayor would look after the businesses and would do a weekly check on them.

Beating of the bounds:-

The next ceremony was the beating of the bounds. It was a ceremony in which we were turned upside-down and our heads touched the stones which marked the ancient boundaries of Chepping Wycombe, chepping meant “in view of…” and Wycombe meant  ” Market town” in old English, as Wycombe was just a small village besieged by forests.

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Meeting our local firefighters:-

Our final stop was to the fire Station. A man called Howard took us to the “Bays”. A room where all the equipment is stored. He told us how all the tools work and I even tried to hold one. Although, it was very heavy!!!, we held the hoses and the water guns; Howard even showed us how to connect the pipes to the hoses and how he could take water from any source. Then, it was my turn to try and put on the fireman’s clothes. The time limit for a Fireman to get dressed is 80 seconds and their chattels include: boots, with steel inside them for foot protection, baggy trousers (which felt like a ton!!!…. well at least to me) and an extremely thick coat, which stopped the heat from the fire hurting or burning your skin.

I had a wonderful time being Mayor; I hope this gave you an insight to what it actually feels like, being a Mayor.

 

The lavish food of India !!!

From Anshi’s desk……..

I’ve always loved the exotic taste of homemade Indian food. The exquisite texture, the delectable smell, the toothsome feeling when the burst of flavours touches the tip of your tongue. I have always loved watching and helping my marvelous mother cook dinner.

I’ve always adored gazing at the steam rising from the cooker, the popping of the pan as mustard seeds get fried with curry leaves, the smell of the perfect blend between ginger and garlic. My favourite Indian foods are: chicken curry( Kashmiri style), Lamb curry (Kashmiri style), Kashmiri Dumaloo and Aloo Parantha.

I love these foods because of there amazing taste; take Dumaloo for example, I endear it because of it’s disconcerting taste – the magical taste of the spice which makes you feel like you’ve been hit by a purgatory of flavour and spice; as you may have noticed I relish Indian flavours.

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Lamb Roganjosh is my favourite dish because of its smell, taste, and it’s absolutely sublime texture.

This is how I feel about the absolutely, stupendous authentic Indian food; and I certainly hope you do too!