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29th November 2000 - Page 2

Into Thin Air - Jon Cadaver

"Men play at tragedy because they do not believe in the reality of tragedy, which is actually being staged in the civilized world."

When Jon Krakaver reached the summit of Mount Everest in the early afternoon of May 10, 1996, he hadn't slept in 57 hours and was reeling from the brain altering effects of oxygen depletion. As he turned to begin the perilous descent from 29028 feet, twenty other climbers were still pushing doggedly to the top, unaware that the sky has begun to roil with black clouds………

Into thin air is a true story of a harrowing tale of the perils of high altitude climbing, a story of bad luck and worse judgement, and as heart breaking heroism.
Little did Jon krakaver know when they excitedly departed for Kathmandu on March 29, 1996 that the incidents that were to unfold over the next two months would leave the surviving few of them forever changed, shaken and haunted.
In this definitive account of the deadliest season in the history of Everest, Jon takes the reader step by step from Kathmandu to the mountain's deadly pinnacle, unfolding a breathtaking story that will by turns, thrill and terrify.
Krakaver introduces the many 'players' until they feel familiar and then leads the reader up the mountain with each one of them, into the so called 'death zone', above 25,000 feet.
I suppose its because it is a story written so brilliantly, so movingly, so grippingly and because it makes you such an inseparable part of 
each alpinist's life-trekking with them, laughing, crying, literally shivering with them, sharing their moments of glory and despair that by the time you reach the end of their saga, having quietly followed the ill-fated lot through its preparation and shakedown forays, you truly and actually feel the lucid, blow by blow emotions during the cataclysmic storm and the death and agony following in its wake.
Not putting it down for even a nanosecond, Into thin Air is by and far one of the most riveting, most driving books I have ever read, and would be the topmost of my list of recommendations.
It is a very practically written book, offering insights to this tragedy and adroitly shifts the misunderstandings, miscalculations and misguided zeal that led the climbers to their doom.
Illustrations, photographs and excerpts of recordings and conversations all enhance the chilling journey up and for some down Everest, and prompted me to go on to read yet another 

Another account of this tragedy by another survivor 'Anatoli Bourkeev', spend endless hours on the Internet, researching this tragedy all its protagonists and even watching the actual 
film with the actual climbers called 'Everest', that was made by the IMAX expedition after they returned from their climb.
Into Thin Air - Time collapses as minute by minute, Kravaker movingly chronicles what ensued, much of which although is near agony to read is even more impossible to put down. 

By Mohita Ellaina Sitara 

The Silly Penguin & his Friend

In the cold lands of Antarctica there lived a penguin and a dolphin. They were good friends but always had fights over the smallest of things. Here is a small introduction of the two.
The PENGUIN was an unpleasant bird that was quite stupid and thought too much of himself. He was not aware of things that go on in the other parts of the world. He had never been able to go out of Antarctica. The penguin always showed off about what a great bird he was which was really not true.
The DOLPHIN on the other hand was smart and intelligent. She had traveled the world due to lack of water in a particular place. She knew about the other parts of the world and could tell right from wrong. She was not at all a show off like her friend, the penguin. 
One day the two friends decided to go on a world tour. Unfortunately the ended up in a dry, huge desert called Sahara in the Dark Continent of Africa. It was scorching hot and there was no food or water. All there was were a few pointy cactuses that they could not feed on.
The penguin began to feel hot, as he was not used to this kind of climate. He suggested leading her to water and some fresh leaves even though he did not know anything about the place.
The dolphin asked if she could do so as the penguin was not aware of the way to the oasis. She did not even know if he knew what an Oasis was. 
The penguin disagreed. So the dolphin went her own way and the penguin went his own. The dolphin was happy in the oasis as the penguin was dying of heat in the desert. 
He called out for the dolphin in a loud voice. Suddenly there was a splash and the dolphin stood in front of him. She explained to him what he had done and how foolish he had been.
The penguin cursed his foolishness and promised never to behave like that again. 

By Aaditi, Asmita, Tahira, Ishrat and Angeeta 
Class VI 

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