Extempore Competition

extempore.pngHi fellas! I’m back!

This Friday (August 2nd) we had Extempore Speech competition at school, and I was one of the participants. In today’s post, I am going to tell you all about that superb day.

Originally, the extempore was scheduled to take place on July 30th, but due to some reasons it had been postponed to August 6th. Then again, it was preponed to Friday.

As you can understand, Friday morning was a very exciting one for me. My sister was not well, so she couldn’t go to school with me. As we were sitting in the school bus, on our way to school, I was so tensed I was almost falling out of the huge window by  my seat. Two of my friends – Sudu and Rishita were absent. When I reached school, I met my other co-competitors Anismita and Alyona (my friends again). I was not as nervous as before, because I had rehearsed well the previous day. But it is difficult not to feel scared when you see the whole school, including the teachers, juniors and seniors sitting in front of you, hearing everything you say.

We were placed in Group A, the senior-most group. First, the children from Groups B and C were allowed to speak about their given topics. Most of them spoke very well indeed. Then came our turn. Anismita was the first to speak from our Group, followed by Alyona and Upama (another girl) and then me. Our topics were A Quarrelsome Episode, A Job I’d Love To Do, We’re Fortunate To Be Born in India and Impact of Media on Youth, respectively. My topic was different, and spoke about communication technology, internet, media and how it affects the younger generation. (I’m not boasting, but I think I’d done quite well compared to what I was thinking I’d do.)

The teachers and classmates praised me quite a lot, though I was unable to bag a prize. Anismita won the second place from Group C. She had spoken really well, I must say.

Though I didn’t win anything, it was a memorable experience speaking something impromptu in front of the whole school.

What do you think about this post? Why don’t you tell me in the comments section how you feel about this? 🙂 Goodbye, until the next post!

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Did you read my other posts?

Basketball At School

Photographs Clicked By Me!

My First Post in A While

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New here? Read my first post.

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Visit my friend Alyona Akshyata’s blog!

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Thanks for reading!

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Welcome Me Back!

Did you guys miss me?

smile

I know I’ve been away for about a month now, and that’s all thanks to my examination and the super tough time I’ve been going through. I told you about my summer vacation at school (Read It Here) and if you have read it, you must be aware that I had a load of things to do–complete the school project on Dyeing Units, then prepare for Phase Test and school exams, and lot of work. AND IT’S ALL DONE! I finished the exams just yesterday. I was planning to sit down with the computer last night, but then my Mom decided we should celebrate, and we returned late so I could not do anything. But now I’m totally free and so let’s chat a while.

Let me tell you all about what I did this whole time – one by one.

First up, I had to complete my school project, the one on Dyeing Units. My friends and I went on two sets of excursions and conducted the survey in various factories. The first one was to Serampore (a small town  – famous for its textile). The second was to Bolpur (another small town – famous for The Shantiniketan or Visva Bharati University created by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore). It was the peak of summer and we were sweating profusely. The first trip was farther away – and the Dyeing Mills were bigger and we had walk and climb and get boiled in the sweltering heat. But it was fun, though the girls I’d gone with were not some of my ‘very good friends’ but they were friends. We had the yummy ‘dosa’ (tortillas with veggies in it) and chocolate for breakfast. Then, after the hectic day was almost done, we had a super delicious lunch at the hotel, where the people had decorated an entire hall just for the twenty of us! We were not sure whether to have dinner, too, or not – but then it was dark by the time we finished up, Mom and Dad decided we should dinner at a very cool and sparkly restaurant. The next trip was more hectic. But part of it was my fault. That morning we had to wake up super early. Mom and Dad gave me a glass of milk and bread-and-butter for breakfast, but I did not want to eat that boring stuff. And, you want to know what happened later when we reached Bolpur? I almost fainted because my tummy was devoid of anything but water, and then due to the tiring walks, I became so tired and legs felt so weak I almost fell on my friend Rishita. Then I had to tell the truth to Mom and Dad, but they didn’t mind it. I was given some water and some energy bars to eat, and in a half-hour I was back on my feet. We had lunch and some snacks later on, and we – Sudarshana, Naaz, Rishita and I were not pleased when Anismita said she would go back, not home, but to her family house where all her cousins were. Lucky guy!

And now the project is complete. Phew! But then comes the FIITJEE phase test. FIITJEE is Forum for Indian Institute of Technology Joint Entrance Examination – the country-wide public exam students take if they want to study at any famous Engineering College or Univeristy – in fact, the best in the country, but only if they wish to pursue Engineering. I’m one of them who’s going to take four years later, and FIITJEE is a coaching institute where they prepare us for the exam and other related tests. They gave all students a mock exam called a Phase Test which is basically a regular test which happens every two months. So, one more week was taken.

Then comes the fun part – MY BIRTHDAY!!! It was the on the 15th of June, and I turned fourteen (woohoo!) I got seven packets of Nachos, four packets of Snickers chocolates, a super large Galaxy chocolate, and a massive box of mango ice-cream (yummy!) And the whole day I sat there with my Mom’s phone, thanking all those who were sending me Birthday Wishes on WhatsApp! But sadly, there was no party but as I told you, we had a post-birthday outing at the Citi Residenci, a popular hotel out here. And I got to eat a SIZZLER! for the first time in my life!!!! We also had kebabs, chicken sweet corn soup and sweet buttermilk for starters (first two) and dessert respectively.

Moreover, one more thing is exciting me – the guitar. One of besties (Sudu) just started taking guitar lessons and Mom says she’ll make me learn that, too! I just love guitar because it’s so cool. Presently, I’m learning the harmonium, a very boring instrument because my music teacher gives me ancient (rather, prehistoric) folk songs to play on it and you can’t even download the key notes of cooler songs because you can’t play them on it (the music is totally nasal 😦 ). But with a guitar, even if my teacher gives me old songs to play, I can easily get the chords from the web and learn to play them, eventually.

This was what happened to me the whole summer. What do you think? Tell me in the comments what you liked the most, or what is your favourite thing to do in summer! 🙂

See ya next time!

All pictures have been downloaded from Google Images

 

My First Sleepover

What an amazing day it was!

Hey there! Did you read my last post titled Summer Hols? If you did, you should have known that we were going to have a sleepover at our favourite teacher Ananya Miss’s place.

So, we had the amazing sleepover yesterday! Did I tell you it was also the birthday of one of my best friends Anismita? It was her 14th birthday, and she had brought a big chocolate ice-cream cake (my favourite!), three huge bottles of Sprite and Coke, lots of potato chips, cheese pizza and a gigantic box of butterscotch ice cream (yum, yum and yum!) Besides that, one of our friends Sneha had also brought Sprite, chips, a big strawberry ice cake and another huge box of vanilla ice cream. Heaven!

I was the second one to reach the venue, after Apurva, who was dressed in a red frock. I had with me, a bag filled with games, my favourite pillow and blanket and my Samsung tablet. Almost at the same time, arrived Sudarshana “Sudu”, my other bestie. She was in a yellow dress. And yes, I was dressed very casually in a red polo and blue pyjamas (it was a slumber party after all! 😉 ). Soon after, all the girls arrived with Anismita arriving last of all. She had put on a yellow tank top and black trousers. Ananya Miss was very happy to see us all. We decorated a small table with cakes and candles and sang the birthday song for Anismita. Then, all of us sat in a circle on the floor, eating our cakes and chips, soon after which the Sprite and pizza were served. They were all delicious!

The party began at 9 pm. By 10, our eating session was complete and we put on some music and danced. Not all of us are talented dancers, but especially Sudu and I were just making up weird steps and dancing! We clicked several pictures and shot videos of the crazy happenings. At 2 am (yes), Miss suggested we should have our dinner. She had made fried rice and chicken which were just yummy! Even the people who hardly used to eat anything ate a huge lot of food. We could not dance anymore after having the dinner and then a round of vanilla ice-cream. We spread soft mattresses over the floor and sat or just lied down on them. The lights were put off and Ananya Miss and her family went to bed. The windows were kept open and it was dark all around. Kinda spooky! But we continued to talk. We talked about school, about what we would do when we grew up and all that. Soon, we were automatically divided into two groups. Apurva, Pritha, Swetasree, Sneha and Annesha formed a group because they all wanted to watch music videos or makeover or dance videos on YouTube while the comparatively non-girly group were us – Anismita, Sudu, Jiya, Shristi, Naaz and me. We began talking about alien invasions and what scientists believed about alien existence, we talked about spirits and the possibility of life beyond Earth, and about what resulted in the origin of humans and about death and life after that, and about the society and basically, various scientific theories. It really interests us a lot. We even shared stories where we had ourselves or somebody we know had experienced mysterious happenings around us. It was real fun discussing all that because we didn’t time to do that in school.

We chatted the whole night, without sleeping a bit. It was almost five in the morning when Naaz suggested we should take a little rest before going home. So, we lied down and soon everybody fell fast asleep.

We returned home by seven. It was a really memorable day for all of us. We would never forget it!

 

The 5 Advantages of Being Sick

Being unwell always has its toll on a person. But here are some super duper cool ways to enjoy yourself while you are sick!

Hello you-out-there, hope you are doing good. Great! I’d been quite ill since the last week  and I tell you what, I have been enjoying the days very well. Wanna know how? Read on for some awesome tips and tricks to enjoy while you’re out of sorts!

  • YOU’RE THE CENTRE OF ATTENTION – AND ATTRACTION [wink]

When you’re not well, everyone in the house is looking after you, saying good things about you and making you happy. Sometimes, you even get to have what you want. If there’s a visitor, a sick member in the family will always catch the eye eventually. It does feel like you’re a celebrity, though you’re not well.

  • NO HURRY, ONLY REST

The few days of not-being-well does replenish your sleep debt. If you are someone like me, who’s always running for school, studies and books, you probably get very little rest. Enjoy these couple of days to the fullest by sleeping or just lying in your bed with your favourite book! Sounds awesome, doesn’t it?

  • GO AS YOU LIKE!

I don’t know about others, but I’m very lucky whenever I’m unwell. During these days, the doctor always says to my Dad or Mom, “Make sure she doesn’t eat <stuff that I hate the most>” and continues, “but she should eat <stuff that I’d probably die for eg. fruit juice>”.

  • YOU’RE THE MASTER

When you are sick, the whole house listens to you. I just put on a sweet look and say, “Can you please hand me the remote?” while still lazying in the couch, cozy up inside a blanket! And voila, the person you’re speaking to is bound to follow your command and well, hand you the remote or even put on your favourite show! Sometimes, you might find your favourite food for dinner!

  • A GOOD EXCUSE! 😉

Everyone will forgive you. They will. They have to.

SO, THIS WAS MY TINY LIST OF WAYS YOU CAN FEEL GOOD WHILE YOU’RE SICK. TELL ME HOW YOU ENJOY YOUR SICK DAYS!

Summer Hols!

Aloha everyone! I don’t know about y’all but where I live, it’s summertime and guess what? School just got closed for the summers! (Oh yeah!) And moreover, we’ve got no homework! (I repeat, NO HOMEWORK at all!) But, I’m afraid it’s not going to be very fun this summer. That’s because, soon after school reopens, we’re going to start our First Terminal Exams, and that means this summer will be spent only studying, studying and studying. Moreover, we have been assigned with a very huge project for our Biology internals and for that project we need to go to renowned dyeing factories and conduct surveys among the people to get to know about what waste the factories usually produce and how they deal with it. So, basically, I’m going to have a very busy time this summer but I do hope we’ll have some fun in between all the studies and project work.

You might want to know why I am super excited at the moment. MY BIRTHDAY IS COMING UP!!! It’s on the 15th of June and I think my parents might throw a nice party for me and my friends. Another thing that is making me very happy is the sleepover! Which is today! It’s actually a pretty long story behind this amazing thing.

My friends and I have a very amazing teacher – Ananya Miss. She gives us Math classes at her place every Monday and Friday. She is super fun, kind and friendly and is our favourite! During the Final Exams, a bunch of us asked if we could get extra hours of coaching from her because she is the only one who can make us score very well in the Math exam. Not only did she give us extra classes the whole month, but she was also very pleased with us. Therefore, she offered to throw a sleepover at her place for the ‘bunch of us’ who had attended the extra classes. That had been due all this while, and now that it’s vacation, she let us have the sleepover – TODAY! (I mean tonight >_<). We’re about eleven of us:

  • ANISMITA aka Harry – the brainy one
  • SUDARSHANA aka Sudu – the super-fun-to-be-with one
  • NAAZ aka Naazoo (like ‘Cashew’) – the smart one
  • JIYA aka Jiyu – the funny one
  • SHRISTI aka Jassi – the -smart+funny one
  • APURVA aka Apoo – the bookworm
  • PRITHA aka Prithu – the quiet one
  • SNEHA AND SWETASREE aka Snehoo and Swetoo – the-who-can’t-ever-be-separate duo
  • ANNESHA – the dancer
  • And LAST, BUT NEVER THE LEAST (actually, I would have put my name on top) – ME – the super cool, fun and nerdy one

So, that completes our list. I’ll be telling more about the sleepover tomorrow or maybe the day after when the sleepover is ‘over’. Until then, stay cool!

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THE CREEP CHRONICLES – A NEW SERIES OF SHORT HORROR STORIES WAS STARTED ON MAY 12TH. SUBSCRIBE NOW TO GET NOTIFIED EVERY OTHER WEEK WHEN THERE’S A NEW CREEP CHRONICLE OUT FOR READING.

Alex and Olive were invited by the small boy Liam, to their lonely mansion near the church. But why would anyone want to live in such a deserted area? What happened afterwards? Read it.

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HAVE YOU READ THESE YET?

My amazing evening with an “ancient buddy”

About The Switch Reads

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THANKS FOR READING! TELL ME WHAT YOU THINK ABOUT THIS! 😉

Meeting an old friend

Hey there readers! Good to see you back again.

I had a superb day yesterday. . Guess what? I just spent a whole amazing day with my friend Mohor, today. Mohor is not one of my schoolmates, we’re neighbours and childhood buddies back in Kharagpur (where my father works now). Mamma, Raya and I moved to Durgapur because Mamma works here and we tag along with her. But Mohor didn’t because both her parents work in Kharagpur. When we were very young, we all lived in Kharagpur, Mohor and I were best of friends. We studied, played and enjoyed together all the time. But, I hardly get to meet her after we moved here and today was one of those really exciting days!

Mohor had come to Durgapur with her parents because they had some conference kinda thing with Mamma at her office. I was super excited and jumping with glee when Mom informed us that they would be coming to our house for the evening. Very soon, they all arrived and Mohor had a smiling face. Initially, I was confused what to talk about with her but then we began chatting away to glory. We talked about school, our friends, teachers, studies and all that. Each of us had awesome, funny tales to share and it left us all laughing.

Okay, so I need to tell you a bit about my ancient buddy. Mohor is a tall, skinny girl (not as tall as me, but tall indeed) with very short hair like mine. She has a keen sense of humour. Like me, she loves to hear Taylor Swift A LOT!!! Also, she likes K-pop, electronic and rap. And she is a hardcore bookworm, much like me. After our fun-filled and silly chit-chat and jokes, Mamma called us for snacks. We had yummy egg rolls with ketchup and sweets. Having finished up with the food, we went on to play some Taylor Swift and Korean pop music which though, my little sister did not feel attracted to.

Anyways, after some music, we felt bored and our mothers suggested we go and enjoy ourselves in the Junction Mall, the biggest shopping plaza in our city! We were overjoyed because it was the first time we were going to do some shopping by ourselves. Raya, Mohor and I were accompanied by Mohor’s parents. We had unlimited fun in the Mall. We rode toy trains, huge Iron-Man robot vehicles, hover-boards; explored the awesome storybooks and other cool stuff at Rare Planet, a shop which sells really nice goodies like books, pencil cases, pens, bags and toys!  There, as I was looking through the beautiful silver alarm clocks, one of the other customers knocked off one clock and BANG!!! It fell to the floor with such a jingling noise. I was petrified because everybody stared at me like I was the culprit. The cover of the battery socket had come off, and I fixed it in a jiffy…and the next moment we were back at looking at the books. Then suddenly the store lady approached me and said, “Miss, I’m afraid you’ll need to pay for the broken alarm clock.”

“What? It did not break. I-I mean I didn’t break anything,” I replied.

“You didn’t?” she asked, putting on a very astonished look on her face.

Then she looked at the alarm clock and tried very hard to locate some malfunction but unfortunately, it was perfect. I heaved a sigh of relief when she didn’t tell me anything more.

Do you know what the best way of shopping is? It is: look at everything, but do not buy anything! And we did just that.

We stared and admired all the beautiful stuff, and when we were done, we left the store. I needed a glue stick, a notebook and a bunch of pens, but they were too expensive. I decided to buy them later, at the little bookshop near our house. There were hundreds and thousands of stores filled with clothes, watches, furniture, TVs, bags and shoes. We needed nothing, so there was just one thing left – food. That was the best thing ever. I suggested we should have some yummy snacks and go home. Mohor, Raya and Mohor’s parents agreed. So, we hopped in to MacDonald’s, and Mohor’s mother handed us two thousand bucks and said, “Spend it all, kiddies, and have fun!” Raya and I were amazed. We were never given such a lot of money to spend all by ourselves! Mohor laughed and said, “My Mom is like that. Whenever I go to the festival gatherings with my friends, my mother gives a lot of money and we’re free to spend it all on food, rides and drinks. Isn’t it fun?”

We were very pleased, and figured out a menu. We decided to order two MacChicken meals (each meal consists of two large chicken burgers, two glasses of Coke, one packet of french fries and two pizza puffs) and one extra chicken burger. The whole thing cost 600 bucks and when we mentioned our idea to the waiter, he dismissed it and pointed to a big signboard that said: “60% off on MacChicken Combos: three chicken burgers, three glasses of choice soft drink: Coke or Sprite, three large pizza puffs and one huge pack of French Fries, only for 500.” That was a very clever idea. Three people can fill their tummies in just five hundred! We immediately ordered that one, and in ten minutes, there were three trays filled with yummy (junk) food arrived in front of us. They smelled deliciousWe enjoyed all the junk very heartily (It was a very first burger!) and felt we were missing something. So we ordered three large chocolate swirl ice-creams for 300. Chocolate swirls are nothing but a tall swirling of vanilla ice-cream coated with chocolate, placed on top of a biscuit cone. The ice-cream, though initially very soft, gradually froze into a cave of chocolate. It tasted like heaven…!

We couldn’t eat anymore. With happy stomachs, we returned home and bid goodbye to Mohor and her parents. It was a memorable day indeed!

Did you like our amazing day? Comment down your views.

P.S.: Actually, we also planned to watch the new movie “Avengers: Infinity War” but it was a night show so Mamma didn’t allow us to stay awake because we had school the next morning.

 

My Home Library

It’s been a while since I’ve written anything on my blog. And….I’M BACK!!!

Just so you know, I had been extremely busy with school and studies all this while, and finally I’ve settled down everything, so I can extract a bit of free time.

There was something else I had been doing these two weeks…and that is – building my own home library! Yes. I was busy doing that. Now, I have arranged all my books into my bookshelves and I have made a comfy little reading space for myself. Oh yes, and my library is called THE SWITCH READS. There’s a teeny little reason behind this nomenclature. Actually, I’d found out a Harry Potter Name Generator website and generated a name for myself. I was named “Merinda Switch” (remember that, because we’re going to need it later! >_<). And hence the name…The Switch Reads.

So, where were we? Yes, library. My library has all sorts of books – fiction, non-fiction, school books, everything! I’ve cataloged them all and now I’ll be lending books to my friends and anyone who needs them. I have even made very professional-looking cards, flyers, posters and cool stuff for my library. I’ll be even giving out free bookmarks with each registration! So, if you’re someone who lives near me, or you’re one of my best buddies, you can easily approach me and ask for a THE SWITCH READS library card straight away.

Remember, you can’t borrow books to your home without registering, that is, issuing a card for yourself.

You can also fill up your details down below for registering with THE SWITCH READS.

 

 

YAAYYYY!!! SKATEBOARD JUST ARRIVED!

I’m too excited to write this thing now.

My skateboard just got delivered. It’s as cool as I thought it would be! It even has free gear with it. I can’t wait for Mom to return from office so I can start riding my skateboard.

As I said in one of my previous posts (click here to read that one), it’s blue and has street art on it. It’s very huge and heavy and hard. It’s got yellow wheels that roll quite smoothly. I guess it’s made of wood.

I’ve already seen quite a few videos on how to begin skateboarding and a few basic tricks.

I’m so excited I’ve got a writer’s block at this moment. I’ll update you guys when there’s something more to tell about me and my skateboard.

 

 

First Day of School Year

It’s 4th April and it was the first day of the school year.

We’re moved to the ninth grade. The classroom is not as bright and sunny as it was in the eighth. It’s quite dark and boring in here. Still, I hope to enjoy it.

I even started a diary for the school year and wrote stuff in it. Our class teacher is Miss Debroy and she’s strict but funny at times. She made a ton of rules for us to follow and also told us that we’d have a mini ‘School Cert.’ at the end of this year. We were terrified when she told that but she assured as it would be as easy as pie, easier than last year’s paper.

I’m roll number 23 and it’s the first time I’m so ahead in the roll list. I am to sit beside a girl called Manisha. She’s a show-off. But anyway I have to bear with her.

It’s a good thing I’ve not been appointed any post (like class leader, treasurer and all that) this year. It’s a very hectic job to manage all that.

SO…

Basically this all means that now we’re back to reality and have to work hard and do something meaningful this term. Wish me luck guys!

Comment down your views and experiences on the first day of school.

 

School is starting!

It’s been over a month since we’re at home. And now school’s going to start again, TOMORROW, April 4th.

And that means, meeting all my friends again! And some new classmates, and new teachers, and new books and notebooks and projects. Don’t you think it’s fun?

I’ve been promoted to the ninth grade this year and it’s quite cool because they’re a lot of new topics to learn about, and we’ll get to go to the science labs more frequently and even use the stuff out here which we weren’t allowed to use earlier. Also, we’ll now get a huge lot of project work, model making and all that.

What else? The School Certificate examination (we call that I.C.S.E in short) is just two years away and we’ll have to start prepping up for that.

My dad told he’ll get me a new air rifle if I score very well in the final exams. I’ll do my best and get that thing.

What’s bad is that I’m separated from my bestest friends :(. They’re in Section A of the ninth grade whereas I’m in Section B. Two of them are still with me and I’ll get to meet my friends in the recess, before the morning prayer and after school or in the evenings. It’s not that bad that way. We can even talk over WhatsApp or something like that. I guess I’ll not miss them, though I can’t meet them between classes.

I hope I’ll do good this term. I know I can’t post a lot when school’s started but I’ll be posting at least twice or thrice a week.

I’m also VERY EXCITED because I’m getting my new SKATEBOARD!!! YESSS! I already told about it in my previous post. And I’ll tell more when it arrives tomorrow.

 

I’m Getting A SKATEBOARD!!!

I’m so excited!!!

Guess what, I’m getting my first professional skateboard in my life! My parents just ordered it on Amazon and we’re getting it this Tuesday. They even got me a brand new set of skating gear which’ll reach us this Friday.

My new skateboard is a Strauss Bronx FT model, a blue one with street art on it. The gear is blue too! It’s my favourite colour! I really love skateboarding!

I THINK THIS IS THE AWESOMEST THING THAT HAS HAPPENED TO ME EVER!

I already love my new skateboard though I haven’t got it yet. The gear is very cool, too. What’s more? I also got a new pair of skating shoes and a backpack.

The shoes are grey with light orange (kinda pink) straps and the backpack is bright red with some white stripes. I think I got the bag because school’s about to start. Anyway, it’s just as awesome.

I can’t wait to show all my friends my new buddy. I think they’ll all want to ride it. I’ll be telling about it more in one of my blog posts some time later when I get my skateboard.

Till then, stay tuned and comment down your views.

Bye!
-Richa @SuperRicha

Collars-Up! Playing Basketball

Richa's Escapades

Basketball is one of my favourite games. Today is Thursday, and it is one of those really amazing days, because…WE GOT TO PLAY BASKETBALL, at school today. I really like the fact that I’m leading the school team quite often.

My team is called the COLLARS UP! team (yes). That’s a weird name I suppose, but it has got a reason. We’re symbolized, that is, distinguished from other rival teams by our upturned collars during the game, because we all wear the same uniform and it is very difficult for the players to identify their own teammates and their rivals, and for the audience to differentiate between teams.

I am usually at the center or at the point guard, because I usually start the match and I am also the tallest player (actually, the tallest child in my form). I am really proud of myself because I am considered one…

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The Creep Chronicles #1 – The Hospitable Dead

Alex was surprised to see the small child alone, sitting on the grass. Unlike the other children who were playing and shouting and running all over the playground gleefully, the boy kept to himself, quiet and watching the others. He was thin and looked very ill. He had a pale, greyish tinge in his complexion. Suddenly, the boy caught Alex staring at him and smiled politely. Much to Alex’s astonishment, the boy approached him slowly and shook hands with him.

“Hi! I am Liam. It’s nice to meet you!” the boy said, quite nicely. Alex felt a slight shiver run down his spine as his hand touched the boy’s. Gradually, he indulged in talking with the child and when he was about to leave, the boy said, smiling, “It was so good to spend time with you, because we usually have nobody to talk to. Mummy and Daddy would be very happy if you’d come to our place some day. Our house is close by, just opposite to the old town church.”

“I’d love to visit you. Thank you Liam.” Alex said very politely though he felt something weird about his new acquaintance.

When Alex returned home, he told his older sister Olive about the child he had met in the park and about his warm invitation. By the time he finished talking, Olive had a very frowning expression on her otherwise cheerful face.

“What is it, Olive?” Alex asked.

“Are you sure you saw him at the park?”

“Of course, I am! That little skinny boy with a pale face.”

“I think I saw him too. Near the school library, today. A small pale-skinned child. He was alone, leaning against one of the pillars, probably watching the other children. He barely smiles, don’t you think?”

Alex kept quiet. Olive could not be joking. She never could when she was serious. And Olive was serious at the moment.

The next day, Alex and Olive left for Liam’s place before sunset. “I remember the address, just opposite to the old town church”, Alex said. “Why would anyone want to stay in such a deserted area of the city?” wondered Olive as she walked down the road with her curious little brother.

The church was away from the main city, in an area full of wilderness. Even when Olive was born, the place was a popular picnic spot for the city dwellers. It was full of lush green trees and cool air and a large, blue pond teeming with fish, and the church, though very ancient, was a well-visited site as it had a vast collection of stone and earthen antiques. It was considered a mini ‘museum’. When they reached the place, Olive recalled the fine sunny day she had come for a picnic over there, with Mum and Dad. Alex was not yet born then. Then suddenly, one day, a strange disease broke out in the area, and all those who lived there, died. Nobody knew anything about the disease, but the knowledgeable folks believed it was caused by a very rare insect which had just started living in the woods. But a lot of things were intact, including the cottages, the fields, the pond which had turned green now and even the deserted church.

Liam’s house was just opposite to the church, a big old villa overgrown with creepers and shrubs. There were innumerable cracks in the walls and they were infested by several creatures including bugs and spiders. Alex shivered and held Olive’s hand tightly as they approached the large wooden front door of the house. Olive pulled the door knocker. Very soon, a tall and fair lady opened the door of the two children.

“Come on in dear, I guess you are Alex and Olive, aren’t you?” she asked, very politely. The children were charmed. Though the lady was very thin and had a faint figure much like Liam himself, she was gentle and very hospitable. She welcomed the children into the large front hall furnished elegantly with luxurious sofas, couches, tables, bookcases and beautiful wall clocks. Liam, the pale boy was sitting quietly at one end of one of the couches with a wide grin on his face. Olive smiled back. Alex didn’t. He felt weird as Liam’s mother, their hostess patted him lightly on the back.

“Go on, children, sit together and have fun while I bring you some snacks” she said, breaking the awkward silence in the hall.

Alex and Olive joined Liam on the couch, careful enough not to get too close. They started talking about school and friends and so on, when they did not notice Liam’s mother, Mrs Wendy by name, was not to be seen around. The hall room was huge, surrounded by a row of doors on either side. Each of the doors were locked and a winding staircase at the far end of the hall led to the upper floor. Soon, Mrs Wendy came in with a tray full of sweets, chips and juice. She offered them to the children. Though scared, Alex and Olive took some juice and chips and Liam ate the rest. After they had finished eating, Mrs Wendy said, “Kids, why don’t you explore the house while I prepare something delicious, the special porridge that we offer to our guests as a symbol of care and our good wishes?”

Liam, suddenly, jumped to his toes and cried happily, “Yes Mamma, I’ll take them around the house!” Mrs Wendy smiled and nodded. Liam hopped along towards the staircase with the confused siblings following him. They visited the library, the guest rooms and finally the bedroom at the end of the corridor. As they were about to enter, one of Liam’s shoelaces broke open.

“Oh, it’s nothing. You two may proceed while I do something about this.” He said, encouraging them to go forth. Olive and Alex entered the room, but as they saw what there was inside the room, Alex gave a shriek and fell unconscious to the floor. There was a stately white bed, with a little boy sleeping on it, and a lady resting her head on the blanket, while kneeling on the ground. The boy’s face had turned whitish and full of small patches. A bowl lay beside the lady’s right knee. A bowl full of porridge.

Alex opened his eyes to see himself lying on a hospital bed, surrounded by his parents, Olive and some doctors. The doctors explained to him what had happened. A few years ago, a strange case of smallpox broke out in the church area. It had affected the entire place and all had died of it. Liam’s family had been one of the very last ones to die. The pathogen had entered their food system and killed one and all. Since then, Liam and his mother continue to live in the house, and they entice many people to visit them and they show them great hospitality and offer to take them around their rooms. When people enter their bedrooms, they see the dreadful sight of the dead Liam and his mother, and immediately acquire the strange disease.

“My child, Alex, you were very lucky to be one of those few people who survive this illness. You are really lucky…” said one of the doctors.

Later, Alex found a small note in his pocket. It read: “Alex, I am Liam. You may be scared of me. But I want to help you. I want you to live and be happy. So I am sparing you and Olive with good health. Take care. – Liam”

*This post has been taken from my story blog Spooked Out and has been written by me (Richa). For more such spooky tales of the paranormal, make sure you visit my super duper scary blog Spooked Out.

I Like Blogging. But why?

I’ve been blogging since last year until I started Super Richa. Here I’m sharing some of the many reasons I love to blog.

Number 1: IT GIVES ME FREEDOM

I love freedom. And I love blogging. Blogging gives me the right to write anything and express my views out to the world.

2. IT IMPROVES MY LANGUAGE AND SPELLING SKILLS

Being a teen blogger, I think blogging helps me flourish my language, writing and spelling skills. And that’s helpful in school.

3. IT’S LIKE A DIARY

A blog is kinda like your diary. It keeps secrets and memories fresh. And the advantage on blogging, is that, it’s online, and it’ll never get lost or hidden or stolen. Imagine reading your very first post years later, when you’re an established blogger!

4. IT GIVES ME A SENSE OF FULFILMENT

Publishing my own creations out to the world gives me a sense of satisfaction and fulfilment.

5. I GET TO SHARE WHAT IT KNOW

There is nobody who knows everything, but everyone knows something. That’s true. I don’t know much, but whatever I know, I can share it with everyone. In return, I learn a lot too!

Thanks for reading this post today.