Thinking about the Text (Page 40)
Question 1 : “I’ll take the risk”. What is the risk? Why does the narrator take it?
Answer : A huge storm was brewing up and the narrator was keen to reach his home to spend his holiday with his family. So, he decided to fly through the storm as he did not want to miss the chance to meet his family at breakfast. Thus, he took the risk even when the visibility was almost zero in the storm.
Question 2 : Describe the narrator’s experience as he flew the aeroplane into the storm.
Answer : As the pilot (narrator) entered the storm, his plane started jumping and twisting. He could not see anything outside the plane as it was black. When he looked at compass and other instruments, they had stopped to function due to storm. This fuel tank was almost empty and he could not fly more than ten minutes.
Then he saw another black aeroplane by his side and the pilot of the plane signalled him to follow. It was a surprise for the narrator as the other black plane was having no light. He followed him without any choice and landed safely on the runway.
Question 3 : Why does the narrator say, “I landed and was not sorry to walk away from the old Dakota….”?
Answer : The narrator describes his experience of flying in the storm as it was old Dakota which was not very big and sophisticated plane and he had very horrific experience flying it. So, he was very happy rather than being sorry after coming out of the plane and took a sigh of relief when it landed safely.
Question 4 : What made the woman in the control centre look the narrator strangely?
Answer : The woman in the control centre looked at the narrator strangely because the narrator asked her about the black aeroplane and she saw no one except the narrator’s in the sky during the storm. Even the radar showed only the narrator’s plane that night in the sky.
Question 5 : Who do you think helped the narrator to reach safely? Discuss this among yourselves and give reasons for your answer.
Answer : It is very difficult to say about the unknown pilot who helped the narrator. But probably it was the narrator himself that helped himself to overcome the fear in the storm as no other plane was seen in the radar except the narrator’s Dakota plane. In that fearsome situation, he might have been hallucinating. He himself was a good pilot and brave enough who helped himself land safely.
Thinking about Language (Page 40)
I. Study the sentences given below.
a) They looked like black mountains.
b) Inside the clouds, everything was suddenly black.
c) In the black clouds near me, I saw another aeroplane.
d) The strange black aeroplane was there.
‘Black’ has a variety of meanings in different contexts. For example:
a) ‘I prefer black tea’ means ‘I prefer tea without milk’.
b) ‘With increasing pollution the future of the world is black‘ means ‘with increasing pollution the future of the world is very depressing/without hope’.
Now try to guess the meanings of the word ‘black’ in the sentences given below. Check the meanings in the dictionary and find out whether you have guessed right.
Question 1 : Go and have a bath, your hands and face are absolutely black………
Answer : The meaning of ‘black’ in this sentence is that the face and hands are dark because of dust and dirt.
Question 2 : The taxi-driver gave Rohan a black look a he crossed the road when the traffic light was green…..
Answer : Here, ‘black’ refers to an angry look.
Question 3 : The bombardment of Hiroshima is on the blackest crimes against humanity……..
Answer : Here, ‘blackest’ refers to the darkest and cruellest crime against humanity.
Question 4 : Very few people enjoy Harold Pinter’s black comdey……..
Answer : Here, ‘black’ refers to dark and gloomy comedy.
Question 5 : Sometimes shopkeepers store essential goods to create false scarcity and then sell these in black……
Answer : The meaning of ‘black’ in this sentence is that the shopkeepers sell the described goods ‘at a higher price’.
Question 6 : Villagers had beaten the criminal black and blue……
Answer : Here, ‘black’ means that the criminal suffered excessive beating at the hands of the villagers.
II. Look at these sentences taken from the lesson you have just read:
a) I was flying my old Dakota aeroplane.
b) The young seagull had been afraid to fly with them.
In the first sentence, the narrator was controlling an aircraft in the air. In the second sentence, the seagull was afraid to move through the air, using its wings.
Match the phrases given under Column A with their meanings given under Column B.
|1. Fly a flag
|a) More quickly/suddenly
|2. Fly into rage
|b) Be successful
|3. Fly along
|c) Display a flag on a long pole
|4. Fly high
|d) Escape from a place
|Fly the coop
|e) Become suddenly very angry
Answer : 1 – c , 2 – e , 3 – a , 4 – b , 5 – d