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The Paper Boy – part 1 of 3

Atualizado: 17 de jun.

John was a good boy who studied hard. His parents encouraged him to start a part-time job when he became an adolescent. At twelve years old he began a paper round. He was a couple of weeks into the job which he did before going to school five days a week, when a group of thugs tore into him after leaving a newspaper at someone's home at the bottom of a cul-de-sac.

They had followed behind him by foot. There were five boys and a girl who confronted him when he left the driveway out into the street. His bike was around the corner resting on bushes. He wasn’t prepared. The first blow came from behind him. He felt a fist beating into his right shoulder. Then as he twisted his neck to see who it was, another boy smashed him with an upper cut like he had seen during TV boxing matches.

He was hit several times, lost consciousness momentarily and lay by the sidewalk; bicycle gone, blood running down his cheek. He was badly bruised from so many direct hits. The only thing he knew for sure, was a boy called Mark, presided over the gang, as he heard others say his name, and he gave the orders.

A few minutes later he woke up, started to feel his fingers and then his arms and legs. Everything was attached and moving, but he was in pain. He couldn’t move very well. His mind was racing over what had happened and he was ashamed and worried about his livelihood of continuing to do his paper round because his bike had been stolen. He managed to get up and slowly walk home.

It took a few weeks for John to fully recover from the facial cuts and bodily bruises. Though he was shaken up, he returned to do his paper round after a few days, once his body could handle cycling. In other words, manage to hold himself up on the bike while carrying and delivering newspapers efficiently. Yes, the first few days were a bit of a struggle, but soon he got back into full swing working mode.

He had been taken by surprise. This left him shocked and scared of being bullied again. He was morally broken and in shame for being unprepared. Luckily the newspaper stand owner took pity on him and gave him another pushbike which he had in the shed at the back of the establishment.

A month later, the event happened again, only this time round the thugs had taken all his money, as well. Life wasn't easy, but John had to pull himself together and take on these bullies, as part of life's responsibilities to overcome difficult situations.

Take care!

Prof. Carl Boniface


Vocabulary meaning:

Tore (v) = is the past tense of the verb to tear. (syn) = ripped, slashed, scratched, gashed, slit, shredded, destroyed

Cul-de-sac (n) = impasse, dead end, blind alley 

Bruised (adj) = discolored aching, injured, hurt, sore, damaged, beaten

Presided (v) = controlled, supervised, headed, led, directed, managed. 1. Be in the position of authority in a meeting or other gathering. "Bishop Levy presided at the meeting."

Full swing (idiom) = at the highest level of activity. Work on the project is in full swing. The party was in full swing by the time we arrived.

Had been (past perfect) = means something began in the past, lasted for some time, then ended. This is entirely in the past. He had been in prison from 1900 to 1914. This verb tense is known as past perfect.

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