Monkeying, sleeping, playing
Hair gel, muscles, facial hair, football,
Dressing up, putting make-up, cooking,
Monkeying, sleeping, playing
Hair gel, muscles, facial hair, football,
Dressing up, putting make-up, cooking,
On my bicycle,
Out of the gate,
Down the lane,
To the Lake Garden,
Past the trees,
Underneath the shade,
Past the playground,
Around the park,
Into the corner,
Along the windy road,
Through the deep forest,
Through the graveyard,
Past an abandoned house,
Upon the dark trail,
Under the huge tree,
Over the old broken bridge,
I tripped over a snake
And fell off my bike.
I realized I was lost and cried.
I was six years old.
Analysis of Oliver Twist
The Industrial Revolution had marked a drastic change to the human society, the beginning of a whole new world and how things would operate. Although the younger generations of the 21st century had gained much from industrialization, the people back then were unable to enjoy the privileges and luxury we have today. The early 1800’s was a prosperous time for England and its second class citizens who consisted of business merchants and factory owners, the common citizens suffered in poverty and hunger. Charles Dicken’s novel “Oliver Twist” portrays a young boy’s life during this dark age.
A young orphan who never knew his identity or his birthday, Oliver Twist was raised in a parish workhouse owned by Mrs. Mann where he spent his childhood in starvation along with the other children. Oliver eventually grew into a thin, pale boy with a face of pallor. At the age of nine, he was transferred to his original workhouse where he was born where he was also mistreated with little food to feed on and neglect. He caused a great uproar one day when he asked for a second hand of supper. Oliver begged (“Please sir, may I have some more?”)(Pg. 16) . The furious parish officer, Mr. Bumble was enraged and came to the conclusion to offer five pounds to whoever could make a man out of Oliver.
An undertaker by the name of Mr. Sowerberry took Oliver as his apprentice for five pounds and the young boy was glad to be out of that workhouse. However, things did not turn out the way Oliver desired after being abused by the Mrs. Sowerberry and a charity boy, Noah Claypole. Noah mocked Oliver’s mother one day which led to the little boy attacking Noah. Oliver was then punished by beatings and locked into his room the following night where Oliver burst into tears and ran away to London, never to return again.
The next episode of Oliver’s life differed greatly from the one he had. It was his first exposure to the real world. A poor innocent boy who knew nothing about the outside world, he fell into a gang of thieves and pickpockets when he met a boy named Jack Dawkins or also known as the Artful Dodger. He gave a new home to Oliver and introduced him to a man named Fagin. The naïve Oliver Twist was unaware of their criminal occupations because all that mattered was that he could eat. The first few phases of this boy’s life portray the potential danger of how a young boy could fall into the wrong hands during that time. There was no law or to protect these young children’s rights which decreased the quality of life among the civilians. However, the novel concluded that Oliver had found his true identity, uncovered the mysteries behind him and most importantly, found a new home to live in.
Charles Dickens strongly emphasized on symbolism, mainly the idea that good will always triumph over evil even though evil continually aspire to destroy and vanquish good. A theme strongly portrayed in his written work is the sufferings of the generations who endured the Industrial Revolution, along with the greed and selfishness of the upper class people and the common life in England at that time which included thieves, pickpockets and the poor children.
Public, Private and Home Education
Education plays a significant role in every one’s future and lives; therefore parents have to ensure that their kids receive proper education. A majority of parents would turn to public school when it comes to education. However, other parents opt for an alternative to public schools, including private schools and home-schooling. Here’s the big question: Which one would be the best for my child? There is no universal answer or solution, for each option have their own distinctive pros and cons.
Public schools would be the traditionally accepted option for parents; some do not see any reason to enroll their children in private schools while others see public schools as their only option due to financial issues. The government offers free education for everyone, meaning that anyone can enroll in public schools, regardless of their academic ability. Students would have the opportunity to socialize with others of various financial statuses and family background. Unfortunately, public schools have various issues which would deteriorate a student’s performance and reputation in school. Bullying tops the list. Recent statistics has shown that one out of every four kids get bullied mentally, physically or verbally in school. Besides that, public schools are not the safest environment as students are vulnerable to dangerous activities such as drug dealing and smoking.
On the other hand, private schools do not belong to the government, so students are required to pay fees to enroll in a private school. Despite that, private schools are more open to suggestions and opinions from parents, students and teachers which would benefit the school and students. The education received is also more student-centered, due to smaller enrolment and classroom sizes, which leads to higher academic results in standardized tests. Students would not have to worry about bullying anymore. Despite the privileges, students are less exposed to the outside world, as the populations of private schools are less diverse; they usually consist of rich kids. Apart from that, courses offered in private schools are also limited, due to a smaller population. Students would not have the opportunity to enroll in certain courses offered by public schools.
Home school is an entirely different from of education compared to public and private schools which has gained popularity over recent years due to varying factors, including dissatisfaction with academic instructions in school, geographic factors and personal safety concerns. It usually involves private tutoring at home, whether it is from the parents or a personal tutor. Home school education is very convenient if a student is unable to attend school. Home schooling has been made easier with the help of sophisticated technologies such as the computer and also online courses offered by companies such as VHS and Seven Star Academy, which does not require any personal tutoring. No matter where a student is, all he or she needs is a computer and internet and there is nothing else to worry about. However, students are missing out a huge significant part of life: exposure to the outside world. Home schooling also lacks cooperation skills and teamwork which could get home school students into big trouble when they have to face other people as they move on in life.
Public schools, private schools and home schools contrast in one way or another. Each form of education serves different purposes, depending on the situation a student is facing. Students and parents are strongly advised to consider their child’s current issues before concluding which one would be best for the student.
The Oppression of Women in Chinese Culture
“Yang, are you ready to fly?” mother whispered in my ear as the sun rose into the sky, marking a new day. Quick as lightning, I sprang from the top bunk and took a quick, refreshing shower. I put on my favorite long-sleeved “Kiko” shirt and jeans and grabbed my little luggage, running towards the front door, full of enthusiasm. “Hurry up mom, we’re going to be late for the flight!” I yelled to my mother who was with my baby brother in her bedroom. ”Hold your horses, young man. Your baby brother is almost ready,” mother replied in her usual sweet and gentle tone. “I told you Ming Ming shouldn’t have come. He’s slowing us down!” “Watch your mouth, Mr. Sim Yang Yang! You are not going to see your father in Hanoi with this attitude!” my mother replied but with a change in tone. I felt guilty at that instant and decided to say nothing. In a few minutes, she was all dressed up in her favorite dress, approaching the front door with my baby brother on one hand and her luggage on the other. We hopped onto the taxi which had been waiting patiently for half an hour and headed off to the airport.
I was looking forward to see my father who had been in Saigon for a year for business. I remember the days when we would climb trees and play Robin Hood in the day and he would tell me stories of his life as a kid that never seemed to end right before I sleep. What excited me more was the fact that I’m flying on an aeroplane for the first time! The idea of flying higher than the birds and reaching the clouds definitely excited a young four-year-old kid like me. The thought of it made me feel like a grown up. Poor mother; she had to calm me down as I got a little out of hand while trying to amuse little Ming Ming who was crying in the taxi. Eventually, I slept in the car, as always. I did not know how long have I dozed off but I woke up on time when I heard the roaring sounds of engines off the runway not far away. We took out our luggage from the car while mother paid and thanked the taxi driver and stepped into the airport. As I stepped into the building I have always dreamt of, I gazed at the massive interior of the airport as if they were stars upon the sky forming a constellation. I was startled by everything in sight; the huge screen in front of me with words and colors which did not make much sense to me, sophisticated technologies I have never seen before, luggage strolling everywhere on conveyor belts and people everywhere. This was more than I had ever imagined!
We were making our way through the monotonous, dull immigration and security check which seemed to take forever. We finally reached the departure gate and mother turned around to me with her index finger pointed sharply along with a stern, serious face in her eyes and warned me “ Remember, do not wander off anywhere. If you get lost, you’ll never see daddy again. Do you understand?” Filled with empathy towards my mother who took up the challenge of handling two little monsters, I nodded obediently, indicating a yes. We sat down at the row of chairs opposite a clothes shop and my mother and brother took a quick nap.
I could not stand the boredom. I had always been the kid who could never sit still for five minutes. I thought I could just wander off nearby for five minutes while they’re asleep, and so I did. My first destination on my little inquisitive journey in the airport was to the toilet for I had to go. It felt awkward when I realized that grown-ups were giving me some sort of stare. “They must be wondering how cool I am,” I thought to myself, so I just walked on with my chest up like a champion. There was a huge glass where I could see the airplanes taking off towards the sky not far away. I headed to the glass, attempting to ignore the creepy stares from the grown-ups. As I watched the airplanes making their way through the runway interrupted by my own reflection, the stares made wonder what did I do wrong.I thought I just thinking too much. I yawned, unamused with the sight so I decided to return to my mother who was probably still asleep. I was trying to find my way back but everything seemed unfamiliar to me. In a spur of a moment, I realized why they were staring at me. I was alone. I was lost.
I looked around, clueless, not knowing what to do now. My heart was pounding rapidly and my mind was nothing but in total confusion. I was frightened as there were so many pairs of eyes looking at me sharply, so I burst into tears, crying in the middle of the airport. I could never forget that humiliating moment which taught me a big lesson, probably the biggest lesson in my life. Why did I leave my mother in the first place? Will I ever see my father again? The last words my mother said kept playing in my mind. “ Remember, do not wander off anywhere. If you get lost, you’ll never see daddy again. Do you understand?” I thought of this as the end for me. I’ll never see my father again. I was wiping off my tears when a young stranger approached me and knelt down. He placed his cold, bony hand on my face and wiped off my tears and asked in a rather soft manner “Are you lost? Where’s your mommy?” Even though he had a gentle, sincere smile which made me feel slightly better, I refused to answer this man whom I do not know. My mother always told me not to converse with any stranger, no matter how nice they could be. I reluctantly shook my head sideways and left that man.
“A lost little child in a massive airport he has never seen with nothing in his pockets. How could things get any worse?” I thought to myself.”Will I be a lone ranger for life?” Pondering along the duty-free shop lots, I saw an angry figure darting towards all of a sudden. When that figure got closer ans closer, I realized that she was my mother and I ran to her, giving her a big hug. What a relief! Mom was clearly furious with me, but glad as well.“Do not ever do that again. I hope you have learnt your lesson, young man.” I nodded, feeling lowly towards my stupid act. I wiped off my very last tears as we grabbed our luggage and stepped onto the plane together.
I remember my younger childhood days when my mischievous acts were bordered by my parents but my imaginations ran wild without boundaries. I recalled the fantasies I grew up with such as embarking on a magical ship with the purple dinosaur across the vast ocean, possessing Superman’s strength and fly with my Lois Lane to the sky, reaching the stars and inventing the time machine to uncover the greatest mysteries. What stood out the most among my childhood dreams was a home. Not just any ordinary one. The home in my head, constructed with memories I grew up with a figment of imagination, inspired by my dear mother.
As a young child eager to see the world I was born into, I took a liking of houses and having a family. She would take my brother and I out on a dinner every Saturday night before going for a long drive, roaming along the beaches along the northern coast of Tanjong Bungah and strolling through the residential area. I would wind down the car window, stick my head out of the window, feel the roar of the wind blowing across my hair and looking at the scenery whether it is the houses or the park, the beach or the hills. After that she would stop at the beach to take us for a walk. As the sand reaches in between my toes for every step I take, she would tell me stories of her old “kampung” wooden house in her hometown and her life as a kid. She lived with her grandmother and cousins and they ran around the lawn monkeying around and climbing the coconut trees before falling down. These ideas fascinated me and the stories inspired my dream home, the perfect home.
Now that I’m a more realistic and mature man, the home up in my mind also became more realistic even though my passion and dreams still rage like fire. I always wanted a home on top of a hill, overlooking the town. Driving into my home, welcomed by the old, wooden gate with creepers growing over the gate, giving it a more natural, soothing theme just the way I like it. Making my way to my dear wife who always gave me a kiss at the doorstep makes me feel loved and relaxed after a long day of work.
I had always been fascinated with the typical English cottages by the countryside, with a little chimney and a low ceiling indoors. I would love my house to be 2-stories high with a cozy living room facing the backyard where I can watch my kids play outside from the inside and a kitchen where my mother can make her favorite pastries and bread in the morning. The fragrance of freshly made bread would spread all over the house and the whole family would wake up, eager to rush downstairs for breakfast.
What I love the most about my “home” has been the backyard. I spent most of my childhood days at the backyard and do all sorts of things whether it was collecting worms, playing tag with my cousins or acting out imaginary adventures as Robin Hood or Tom Sawyer. I cherish these moments and I want my kids to experience what I had at the back of the house. I would also love a gigantic tree at the very corner of the house where we could build a tree house as a family. The tree would also symbolize the unity and strong foundation of the family, as our ties were bonded strongly. The backyard would be incomplete without a swing for two with flowers around it, facing downhill. The gentle breeze and the fragrant aroma of the flowers create the soothing feeling inside me.
As much as I love my home in the day, I also desire a peaceful, enchanting night at home. The night has always been a meaningful time of the day. That’s when the magic begins. I always dream of having a spacious balcony at the very top of the house, where I can do a little stargazing as the stars pop out one by one on the pitch black sky, coated with The Milky Way. My wife and I were fond of astronomy, especially stars and beyond. It would be so romantic for the two of us, doing nothing but looking at the dashing comets and shooting stars, making a wish for each one in sight. My wish would be for the night to last forever with my sweetheart by my side.
My dreams may go as high as the Milky Way, but I have to face the real world. Some dreams are meant to remain a fantasy, never to be fulfilled in reality. However, I am always determined to make the impossible possible, to make my dreams and fantasies a reality. Perhaps in time to come, my home could be accomplished.